Veterinarians consider that dental disease is the most common medical condition in dogs and cats. Dental disease is more accurately called periodontal disease because it also affects the gums. There is significant scientific evidence to show that periodontal disease increases the risk of serious diseases to heart and kidneys. Periodontal disease is more common in small breed dogs, but it can affect all breeds of dogs as well as cats. The prevalence of this condition increases with age, and it is estimated that about 80% of dogs and 70% of cats will have some degree of periodontal disease by three years of age.
The main way to keep periodontal disease at bay in pets is by daily tooth brushing. It is important to use a toothbrush and toothpaste made specifically for pets. Human toothpaste should not be used as it was not designed to be swallowed. It is important to start brushing your pet’s teeth early in life, before tartar has a chance to form and to enable your pet to get used to the process at a young age. Additionally, chew toys and dental chews are very effective in aiding dental hygiene.
Hartz Dentist’s Best Dental Kit for dogs and cats contains a toothbrush, finger brush and a tube of DentaShield toothpaste. DentaShield is a patented formulation for animal dental hygiene that cleans, freshens and whitens teeth. The toothbrush features a dual head design which ensures a perfect fit for every mouth. It also has an angled neck for easy reach and extra soft bristles to provide a gentle, yet effective cleansing action.
Pets in the early stages of periodontal disease may not show any signs. As a result, you should should make sure that your pet’s dental health is evaluated by a veterinarian at least once a year.