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Dog Dentals done yearly?

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  • Dog Dentals done yearly?

    Do any of you guys have your dogs' teeth clean every year?
    Foaling Around www.facebook.com/foalingaround
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  • #2
    My dog will be 14 in a few months, and has never had her teeth cleaned. The vet techs rave about how good her teeth are - one said we should have bred her for her teeth!!


    • #3
      I've never had to do a dental. Mouths on dogs and cats are all perfect. Feed excellent feed, and the need for dentals are drastically reduced or eliminated, barring other health issues.


      • #4
        I have never had a dental done on my dogs, but I will say that some dogs need a dental.

        That said Feb. is doggie dental month, most vets do a discount!


        • #5
          I get them checked yearly and dentals done as needed.

          Last year: 13 year old JRT, no issues and he has never had a cleaning. Two, 1 year old chihuahuas, no issues. 16 year old indoor Siamese cat, pulled 4 teeth and cleaned. 8 year old indoor cat, no concerns. 12 year old indoor/outdoor cat, no concerns with his teeth when we removed a squamous cell mass from his lower eyelid last Feb.

          Last week: 2 year old chihuahua had 4 teeth pulled- they were already very loose, and a had a cleaning. Fri night Doc checked the teeth on a 8 year old indoor/outdoor cat and showed me a broken canine, missing pre-molars that have been reabsorbed and two very damaged teeth that will need pulling. This cats teeth were fine last summer when he was treated for a trauma.

          Doc says sometimes dental problems are genectics- the one chihuahua and sometimes just wear and tear- the cats.

          FTR, small animal dentals run $145 with my vets, extractions are extra and the fee is based on how difficult the extraction is.


          • Original Poster

            Well I just had a dog #1 dental done today, and it was $299 (including discounts). It did include bonding one chipped tooth, but last year I had the other dog's teeth done, he had a cracked tooth and it was just over $200. I was a little shocked at the price. Vet said dog #2 is due for another dental this year (just had one done last Feb), but I'm thinking he probably doesn't really need one, and if so I can't justify the expense or the risk of putting him under if he doesn't really need it. He is only 5 years old with no dental problems that I know of.

            I just wanted to see if it was common or not. I would have not problem doing it if I thought he had some type of dental trouble brewing.
            Foaling Around www.facebook.com/foalingaround
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            • #7
              Once a year? Not at all. Yoshi is 12 and he's due a dental.

              He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).


              • #8
                If a dog needs yearly dentals, then there's something wrong--bad genetics, terrible food or something else...

                How does the dogs teeth and gums actually look?


                • Original Poster

                  There is a little discoloration (plaque?) on the his canines but other than that his mouth looks healthy and smells fine. I'll all for preventative care, maybe I'll try and find some dental/cleaning toys instead.

                  The consensus seems to be that unless he is having problems it isn't necessary. So after my horse gets her teeth done next week I'll call and cancel his appt and try and use the tooth brush that he was sent home with last year.

                  So any recommendations on teeth cleaning toys for large dogs??
                  Last edited by LovelyBay; Feb. 14, 2012, 12:06 AM. Reason: Added more
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                  • #10
                    You could also get a pet tooth brush and brush his teeth.
                    I LOVE my Chickens!


                    • #11
                      My dog is 13 yo and she's had 1 dental procedure when she was about 10 yo. Her teeth are checked every year.


                      • #12
                        My previous lab lived to me 11 and never needed his teeth cleaned.

                        Casey was about 8 when he had his done. He was already going to be under for another procedure and vet thought he needed it.

                        Rosie's teeth were checked last year at age 13 and he said the teeth were pretty worn, had a little placque but not enought to justify a teeth cleaning. A few months later she needed to go under for a growth removal and vet knocked off the worst of the placque while he was there but didn't do a full blown cleaning. He wanted her under as short of a time as possible due to her age.

                        I do know people that their vet recommends a yearly cleaning. I think some vets use the teeth cleaning as a cash cow.
                        Oh, well, clearly you're not thoroughly indoctrinated to COTH yet, because finger pointing and drawing conclusions are the cornerstones of this great online community. (Tidy Rabbit)


                        • #13
                          My dogs get their teeth checked annually (of if they're in for something else), & done only when necessary. They've been great the past 3 years, so no dentals have been necessary. They're all due for their annuals soon, so I probably just jinxed myself.


                          • #14
                            I think a lot has to do with the individual dog, the vet, and the owner combo. Some dogs just build up more plaque than others, and really should have regular dentals. The special 'rinses' you can add to their drinking water, chews, and brushing their teeth can minimize how often (although if you add up the costs it may come out to be more than the dental itself, just spread out over time). Other dogs just seem to have teefies that stay clean whether due to diet, the actual mechanics of their mouth and the way they chew or blind dumb luck.

                            My 14+/- rescue beagleXchi desperately needs one, has a tooth that needs extracting and none of her teeth have probably never seen a scaler of ANY kind, but she's old and has a heart murmur so the vet and I both are on the fence weighing pros and cons of putting her through it at this point. The 2yo blue heeler? her teeth are lovely, plaque so minimal as to be almost non existent, but I suspect she'll be in need of one within the next couple years, and she'll get it.

                            Of course in most cases the vet is going to suggest annual dental cleaning, it's the 'ideal' and it is their job. All the bacteria in that plaque has a direct line into the blood stream and can cause problems other than looking nasty and stinky kisses. (Or so goes the quote from the health maps I had to go over with clients when I worked as an assistant at a small animal practice) But the animal IS anesthetized for the procedure and that comes with it's own risks as well, so it boils down to what the individual dog actually needs, and what the owner is comfortably able to afford/put the dog through anesthesia for.

                            Owned by a Paint/TB and an OTTB.
                            RIP Scoutin' For Trouble ~ 2011 at 10
                            RIP Tasha's Last Tango ~ 2010 at ~23
                            RIP In Sha' Allah ~ 2009 too young at 5


                            • #15
                              I worked in a clinic for just under 10 years. I would say a lot of it just depends on the dog--genetics, diet, other health things, etc.

                              Some dogs in our practice really did need cleanings about every 6 mos. Others we'd check each year and some could go for years without needing anything.

                              My lab is 8 1/2. It's been a running joke with my vet for years because every year I say "is he ready for a dental?" (because he hates having is nails trimmed and I keep hoping we can do it while he's under anes--I'm joking of course)

                              Our standard poodle is just over a year and I think he'll need to have his teeth cleaning sometime in the next year.

                              It seems like smaller dogs have poorer dentition--but I have no statistics to back that up. Could be because they tend to live longer than larger breeds and if their teeth are neglected, they're the ones (along with cats who also live longer) have every tooth in their head rotted out or extracted.

                              As for the benefits and risks, agree w/ EI above. If you're at a good clinic though, you should be able to have a blood panel run prior to anesthesia to check organ function and such, and have fluids on board and monitoring while under anes.
                              A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

                              Might be a reason, never an excuse...


                              • #16
                                Shadow is 12 (the retriever-x beast) and has never had or needed his teeth cleaned. Tribble is 8 and has had hers cleaned twice (corgi.) She could probably have it done every other year, but every three years is about what I can afford.

                                I personally wouldn't want my dog under general anesthesia every year unless it was an emergency, but that's just me being nervous.

                                My vet says that dogs with narrow pointy snouts and smushed ones, like pugs, tend to need more often cleaning than dogs with wider, more square noses/faces. The pointier-nosed ones apparently don't chew much on their way-back teeth so they're not getting scraped by kibble or sticks or whatever.
                                I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry


                                • #17
                                  Well I just had a dog #1 dental done today, and it was $299 (including discounts). It did include bonding one chipped tooth, but last year I had the other dog's teeth done, he had a cracked tooth and it was just over $200. I was a little shocked at the price.
                                  FTR, small animal dentals run $145 with my vets, extractions are extra and the fee is based on how difficult the extraction is.
                                  I clearly need to move. I had my cat in a few weeks ago for an allergy flare-up, and the vet said she needed her teeth cleaned. I noticed her breath had gotten pretty yucky several months ago, but was hoping it was just beef breath. She's only 1 1/2, but has all kinds of allergies and didn't have the luck of the draw for good genes.

                                  The quote? For a dental cleaning and 1 extraction? $725.75. Yeah. Not happening. I called the cheap discount clinic where she was spayed, and their quote was $200 dental, $10-$30 each extraction. Guess where I'll be going??


                                  • #18
                                    I can't believe all these numbers folks are throwing out for dentals. I know that I didn't pay a fraction of them 3 years ago. Will have to see what my vet is currently charging. I'm getting scared.

                                    But then again - this Friday I'm taking one of my elderly cats to a Veterinary Opthalmologist, where just walking over the threshold costs you $95 before they even do anything. Wondering how many tuna casseroles we'll be enjoying for dinner thanks to this episode - lol!!!


                                    • #19
                                      I think it's rediculous to suggest dentals are needed every year for every animal. it's entirely dependent on the animal, but MOST do not need annual cleanings. Smaller breeds typically need cleanings more often, or any dogs with malaligned jaws/teeth.

                                      My female ACD is 10 and has had a pseudo-dental once, without full anesthesia. My male ACD is 4 and I figured if I was going to do one might as well do the other. I would not put my dogs under general anesthesia every year for unnecessary procedures. Even in the absolute best of circumstances anesthesia still has risks, and I like my dogs too much(most days!) to risk their health without reason.

                                      To me, unnecessary anesthesia is like letting your dog play in traffic. They might cross the road 1000 times, but sooner or later somebody's gonna get hit by a bus!
                                      You can't fix stupid.... but you can breed it!


                                      • #20
                                        I have seven chihuahuas. Two of them required dentals and I mean REQUIRED. Green stinky stuff growing on their teeth. Each had a few extractions. I think the most expensive was $220. The other five dogs have lovely white teeth and pink gums. It's definitely a genetic issue at least with chihuahuas. Mine all eat the same dry food and the same chewies.
                                        Dentals every year? No.
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