Swiss Shepherd dog smilesFebruary is National Pet Dental Health Month.The American Veterinary Medical Association and other veterinary groups sponsor this month of awareness efforts.
Pay attention to your pet’s stinky breath! It’s tempting to ignore it, in fact you probably don’t want to be anywhere near it if your pet has stinky breath. However, this is a sign that something could be seriously wrong with your pet!

There are many reasons your pet’s breath could smell off, and those reasons are not just limited to dental care; it could be that your pet has liver damage or other serious organ damage. A trip to the vet for a dental check up could save your pet’s life!

If your pet does have a dental issue, it needs to be taken care of by a trained veterinarian right away. Tooth pain can be very uncomfortable and comes with a plethora of side effects. Your pet may stop eating and become lethargic, or he could have intestinal problems from bacteria- any number of effects can occur from poor dental hygiene.

Afraid of the costs? According to a 2013 analysis conducted by VPI Pet Insurance, the average cost to prevent dental disease (through regular cleaning/descaling) in pets is only $171.82, but it costs significantly increased $531.71 to treat existing dental disease. Houston’s low cost clinics offer cleaning for as low as $75. There’s no excuse for not taking care of Miffy’s mouth!

For more resources check out the AVMA’s website for Pet Dental Month.

Watch this video on how to train your dog or cat to accept daily tooth brushing.