Small Animal Dentistry

Small animals require regular dental care

Periodontal disease is the most common disease in dogs and cats, affecting 85% of the population.

The disease starts by plaque and bacteria attaching to the tooth. As this happens, the body responds with inflammation to some or all of a tooth’s support, which includes the gingiva. As plaque ages, the bacteria continue to reproduce causing gingivitis to develop further and deeper into the tissues.

The disease becomes more advanced due to the bacteria changing to a different type, compromising the entire tooth and the surrounding bone, which ultimately leads to tooth loss. Also, with bacterial constantly present, it spreads to the heart, liver, lungs, and kidneys, causing chronic infection and damage to these organs.

This disease is painful and compromises the health and quality of life for your dog or cat!

Signs of Periodontal Disease

When humans have dental issues and pain, we think to ourselves, “My tooth hurts, I need to schedule to an appointment to see the dentist," but we continue to go about our daily routine, acting normal, continuing to eat, seeming completely healthy to others, until our appointment. Our pets act in the same exact way. We do not expect for you to see changes in your pet with this disease being present. Even at the most advanced stages, dogs and cats will continue to seem healthy and function correctly.

Signs of this disease are not often easily recognized, but are present.  A few of these signs may include:

  • bad breath
  • pain
  • gingivitis
  • broken tooth/teeth
  • excessive drooling
  • reluctance to eating or playing with toys
  • chewing with or favoring one side of the mouth
  • pawing at the mouth
  • swollen/draining tracts under or in front of the eye

Stages of Periodontal Disease

There are 4 different stages of periodontal disease. Early intervention and routine prevention is key since gingivitis can be reversed, stopping the disease's progression.

  • Stage 0
  • Stage 1
  • Stage 2
  • Stage 3
  • Stage 4

Healthy oral cavity, no disease present.


The margin of attached gingiva is inflamed and swollen due to plaque is covering the teeth. Bad breath may start becoming noticeable. This stage can be reversed with a routine periodontal treatment.

Early Periodontitis

The entire attached gum is inflamed and swollen, is painful, and a distinct odor is present from our pet’s mouth.

Established Periodontitis

The gingiva is red and may be bleeding. Tooth structures are being destroyed by bacteria which is causing an infection. Your pet’s mouth is very painful with a strong odor present.

Advanced Periodontitis

Chronic bacterial infection has destroyed the tooth’s supporting structure and compromised tooth health. The gingiva is extremely inflamed and easily bleeds when touched. Your pet’s mouth is extremely painful with a very foul odor present. Bacteria may be spreading throughout your pet’s entire body thru the bloodstream, which overtime, will cause damage to internal organs.

Providing routine periodontal treatment is key to ensuring a quality life for your pet. We are here to help provide the needed services to prevent and treat this disease.

Call us!