Why Are Dental Cleanings Done Under Anesthetic?

Taking The Mystery Out Of Dental Surgery

We see a lot of patients come in with dental disease; statistics show that approximately 85% of pets over one year of age have some form of dental disease. (Verhaert Wetter 2004, Kyllar Wiiter 2005)

There are places out there that offer Anesthetic Free Dentals – we do not recommend this, and I will tell you why! The last thing we would want is a pet that is head shy; doing dentals while a pet is awake can be dangerous. I was once told – no self-respecting animal is going to sit still while we put sharp instruments in their mouths – One quick movement of the pets head can cause cuts, scratches, pain and ultimately a pet who doesn’t want you to look in its mouth!

The other down side of anesthetic free dentals is that you are only cleaning 50% of the teeth! Sure the outside of the teeth that we can see look clean but what about the other side? When under anesthetic we are able to probe around each individual tooth and assess to make sure there are no issues hiding.

Dental disease is painful! Dogs and cats are just so stoic, it is their natural instinct not to show discomfort. We have to remember this and remember that lifting those lips to assess oral health is vital for our pets!


BEFORE                                                AFTER


Still unsure if your pet should have a dental?  Ask our team at your pets next exam to assess the overall oral health.

Rachel RVT

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