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Doggie dental, hold my hand please

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  • Doggie dental, hold my hand please

    I adopted my boy (a now 7YO-ish black Lab) almost 2 years ago. (Halloween, all the black and orange pets were 50% off at the Humane Society. ) He had really nasty funky smelling teeth which haven't bothered him till 1 about0 days ago. (Also, after I got him I was quoted $1400 for the dental work.)

    He goes in tomorrow morning for a dental and multiple extraction (cost: $350-400.) I have no idea how many teeth are coming out, but it will be lots of them.

    This is a boy who LOVES to play fetch, so I'm praying that he gets to keep some of his ball- and stick-picking-up-and-carrying teeth.

    When I was a little girl, my grandpa's dog went in for a routine neutering and never woke up from the anesthesia. I can sedate horses all day long, but the thought of my dog being put out is terrifying.

    I gave him a bath an hour ago. He can't eat after midnight, so he just had a big sloppy, beefy mess over his kibble tonight.

    Just hope this isn't too hard on him. And he'll be better off for it, right?

    Thanks for listening.
    It's a uterus, not a clown car. - Sayyedati

  • #2
    Awwww, big jingles for your boy! It IS nerve-wracking. Especially when you have personal knowledge of one of those scary "what are the odds?" occurrence's like your grandfather's dog.

    I haven't had a dog's teeth done but I've had plenty of cats' teeth done, from routine cleaning to severe plaque to multiple extractions. They have appreciated squishy food for a few days but heck my kitties always appreciate squishy food so that may have been more for me than for them!

    Hope everything goes smoothly and easily for both of you!
    Shall I tell you what I find beautiful about you? You are at your very best when things are worst.


    • #3
      Yes, he's better off for it! And jingles for him tomorrow.


      • #4
        What a loving dog-mom you are!

        My own 7yr lab-mix from the HS went in for the same thing at the same age. It was DEFINITELY the right thing, and I've learned to do my own preventative maintenance since then. This has paid off well for him and for me since I love getting compliments on his teeth from the vet.

        Sorry about that weird, scary experience you had when you were little. All worthwhile things in life are calculated risks. This is one of those things. It's ok to feel nervous, but it's all also gonna be ok. Make sure the vet's office knows you are nervous and why. Ask them to call you with a progress report and to check in if extra anesthesia is needed. Ask to meet with whomever is administering the anesth. when you go in tomorrow. Things have changed since you were a kid! Ask the vet or the tech to explain the procedures and what the actual risks are. They aren't anything like what goes on in a nervous head!

        Good luck and let us know how it goes!
        An auto-save saved my post.

        I might be a cylon


        • #5
          Wow! THat's really cheap, wish I lived in your area! Around here it's nearly 800 for a cleaning and up to 3 extractions (though I get my poodle done before any extractions are needed, the family 12 yr old mutt has had a few extractions done).
          The family mutt has had it done probably 3-4 times. My 7 yr old poodle has had his done twice and neither have ever had a problem with it. They have also both been neutered and not had a problem.
          You can also do the pre-bloodwork to check kidney functions and stuff which can tell them if they need to make any extra precautions or such.


          • #6
            $102 for a cleaning, $46 for the bloodwork. Extractions would jack it up to $350. Sometimes it does pay to live out in the sticks (and I have an exceptionally good and fair priced vet...he's not greedy). If they need fluids, that is a bit extra.

            I'm sure he'll be fine.


            • #7
              These days, the anesthesia available and the support therapy available is so much better than it was even 15 years ago.

              For a pet that age, most veterinarians will do pre anes bloodwork to check out organ function and make sure your pet is good to go for anesthesia. Then the anesthesia used is often something like isoflurane gas--which can be turned right off if they need to bring your pet up. They also often will give IV fluids for the older pets especially and have your pet hooked up and monitored during the procedure.

              Really, the bad teeth are more risky to the health and well being than the dental prophy and anesthesia.

              I just had my 9YO lab's teeth done a week ago. Even knowing all that I typed above, I was nervous too. I'm sure your pup will be okay. Best wishes!
              A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

              Might be a reason, never an excuse...


              • #8
                My family used to have a Collie with bad teeth, so I feel your pain

                I was always very concerned about the anesthesia, too, but the things that can go wrong if you don't have dental work done are just as scary. And personally, I think I'd have an easier time living with myself if my dog passed under anesthesia when I was trying to do the right thing than if I did nothing about his issues and he got a bone infection or sepsis.

                We did have a very comprehensive blood panel done first, which made me feel better.

                Jet (our Collie) was always a rather picky eater with a sensitive GI tract as well, but he did well with a few days of soft food (I think we gave him oatmeal with boiled chicken) and he also got Metacam for the pain. Metacam was the only nsaid that we tried that didn't give him awful diarrhea.

                *Jingles* that your dog has an uneventful dental and recovery!
                "In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn’t merely train him to be semi-human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming part dog."
                -Edward Hoagland


                • #9
                  I just adopted a 14 year old Yorkie about a month ago. He had rotten teeth, so had 6 pulled. He only weighs 3 pounds! I was worried, but it was fine. I did have the blood work done. Cost about $160, because he is a rescue AND my vet totally rocks.
                  his appetite is great and he seems to be doing well.
                  I also had a 16 year old done and she also did fine.
                  Good luck with your guy.


                  • #10
                    How's the boy?
                    Shall I tell you what I find beautiful about you? You are at your very best when things are worst.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Slewdledo View Post
                      the thought of my dog being put out is terrifying.
                      Me too. Especially when they're getting older, it's scary. Mine got a dental cleaning in 2010, and I was a nervous wreck until she was safely home and recovered. With big shiny white teeth I hope everything went well with your guy.


                      • #12
                        It is scary anytime your pet goes under anesthetic.

                        As a pet owner, you can ask the following questions to your vet.

                        - Is there anything on the pre-anes. bloodwork which would cause a concern for the anesthesia?
                        - Will they be getting analgesia before and after the procedure?
                        - What type of anesthesia will they get (gas, injectable only?)
                        - Will they have IV access, or IV fluids during the procedure?
                        - What type of monitors will be uses?
                        (ECG, CO2, SpO2, Blood Pressure)
                        - Will a registered technician be monitoring the anesthesia, or a "veterinary assistant"?

                        A good anesethist will keep the pets mean arterial pressure > 70 mmHg, this is important to keep all the organs perfusing properly. IV fluids is a simple and safe way to maintain adequate blood pressure under anesthetic (as all anesthetic agents will cause hypotension).

                        A registered technician monitoring anesthetic has had training and testing to ensure they are qualified. A veterinary assistant can be anyone, including a highschool co-op student.

                        Up to date, and modern anesthetic monitors are important for the early detection of anesthetic related problems. VPC's, heart block etc. are not easily detected by stethescope alone.

                        Analgesia before the procedure will allow the anesethist to reduce the MAC (percentage of gas anesthetic required). The lower the MAC, the less anesthetic related issues will arise (helps prevent hypotension).

                        These are all great questions to ask your vet, and you have the right to know! They not only give you peace of mind, but make you realize if you have chosen the right vet practice!


                        • Original Poster

                          Thanks, all.

                          He is home and in bed. And drooling blood all over the quilt. They pulled out nine of his teeth, but said that wasn't too bad, last week they had a dog lose 20.

                          It appears (from a quick peek into his mouth) that he got to keep all of his canine teeth. YAY!!!!

                          He is not interested in food yet. I have some Novox pills on hand for him but not sure how to get them into him if he doesn't want to eat anything.

                          When I dropped him off, they said he'd need the bloodwork ($79) and I okayed rabies vaccine, too. So then I was steeling myself for a pretty big bill. But with everything, it came to $419.39. Me = happy.

                          The bloodwork showed a slightly elevated level of whatever they measure regarding kidneys. 28 when it should've been 25 or less.

                          Soft foods for his for at least a week but he doesn't have to go off his kibble if I soak it. Got some cottage cheese and rice and canned food on hand, too, plus my boss gave me some duck eggs to scramble up for him.

                          Tonight (the buoy is his favorite toy, which he brought to bed with him last night.) http://i820.photobucket.com/albums/z...1/IMG_3122.jpg

                          Happier days. He loves being a farm dog.

                          Thank you again for your kind words and thoughts. I definitely came to the right place last night! Please send him a few jingles for as pain-free and quick a recovery as possible.
                          It's a uterus, not a clown car. - Sayyedati


                          • #14
                            Good for you both!


                            • #15
                              Please be very careful with the toys! Our dental home care instructions for dogs with extractions always includes no toys for about 2 weeks while the sites are healing. I'm assuming they are sutured? Too much pressure / motion on them from chewing on toys can cause them to rip out. Hope he recovers well and quickly, and please do give him the pain meds, whether he "needs them or not." Dogs are very good at hiding pain and I'm sure you would want your anti-inflammatories after extensive dental work.
                              Life-long horse lover, dreaming of the day when I have one of my very own.


                              • Original Poster

                                He's doing GREAT. Eating like a champ, back to himself, smelling EVERYTHING (thinking the poor guy's senses of taste and smell were limited?) and chasing balls. And farting up a storm from the soft food (soaked kibble, cottage cheese, rice, & eggs.) The FIRST thing he did this morning when we got to the farm was grab a stick and toss it at me to throw it.

                                He has been on amoxicillin for 8 days and has about 3 more days left. He is getting Novox 2x a day for pain.

                                I don't think there are stitches involved. The vet and techs made no mention of stitches, I wasn't charged for any stitches, and was not asked to set up a post-op appt.

                                The jingles WORKED.
                                It's a uterus, not a clown car. - Sayyedati


                                • #17
                                  Glad your boy did well. I had been following this since my Corgi, Millie, had her first dental today. Thanks to all the suggestions, we also signed up for the blood work and pain meds if needed. She did fine- no extractions needed, just some tarter cleaned off. She was a little subdued when I brought her home, but that could be because she was sure I was trying to starve her to death since I didn't feed her any breakfast
                                  stained glass groupie


                                  • #18
                                    So glad to hear that he is doing so well. I am sure he feels so much better without the problem teeth. There is no pain like tooth pain.
                                    eventgroupie: Aren't they funny when you can't feed them? You can almost hear them thinking that you have forgotten and must just need more reminders. I don't think they are ever quite the same afterwards Mine worry every single day that I might just forget one of their meals, and since they are, you know, starving that would be pretty serious.