What can I do about my pet's bad breath?
Despite the popular jokes about "Dog Breath," foul breath is NOT normal in dogs and cats!
Several problems can cause foul breath in your pet; these problems also cause significant oral pain for your dog and cat.
The most common cause is of bad breath in dogs & cats is PERIODONTAL DISEASE: the build-up of tartar on dog and cat teeth, and the gingivitis (gum infection) that comes with it. This tartar and gingivitis is unsightly and very painful (think of how painful it is for us when we get a popcorn hull stuck between our own teeth!) The poor dog or cat with periodontal disease has to endure 24/7/365 the foul taste and bad breath that accompanies it, and are commonly rejected for cuddling by their owners because they stink so bad! The bacterial infection accompanying tartar and gingivitis gets into the blood stream via the rich blood supply of the gums every time the affected dog or cat chews, licks or swallows. The bacteria travel to the heart, and infect the heart valves, similar to Rheumatic fever in children with Strep throat. 80+% of dogs and cats 3 years of age or older have periodontal disease, and need to have their teeth professionally cleaned. (Think about it--what would YOUR teeth look like if you never brushed them?)
Many pet owners are not aware of the benefits of good dental care for their dogs & cats. Good dental care will relieve your pet of the excruciating pain caused by periodontal disease. It will save BOTH of you from the foul breath associated with periodontal disease. Most importantly, good dental care adds 3-5 healthy, happy years to your pet's life!
Another common cause of mouth odor in dogs and cats are oral tumors. These can occur in pets of almost any age, and are usually treatable if detected early.
The third major cause of mouth odor in pets is a foreign object, such as a splinter, bone, or rock, lodged somewhere in the oral cavity.
ALL dogs and cats with foul breath should be thoroughly examined as soon as possible, so the cause of the problem can be identified and treatment started. The doctors and staff of Windmill Animal Hospital are thoroughly trained, and equipped, to deal with these issues, thereby minimizing your pet's pain and discomfort.