Tag Archives: cat breath

Treats are fine but in moderation

Depositphotos_19533969_m-2015We all give in to the tail wagging and begging.  But when it comes to giving your dog or cat treats, too many can be bad for their health.

It’s best to view your dog’s or cat’s treat as jus
t like you would chocolate for humans.  (BTW – NEVER let your dog or cat eat chocolate – it can be fatal!)  You wouldn’t sit down to a whole box of Hersey Kisses – just like you shouldn’t feed your dog or cat a whole box or bag of treats.

Treats should be fed as just that – treats – and not as food.  The only exception is that if you have a geriatric pet who is a finicky eater and relies on treats for extra calories.  Elsewhere in this blog, we suggest treats as food replacement under these circumstances.  But for a healthy pet, treats should be limited.

Pets that are fed treats as much as regular food are at risk of becoming obese which can lead to heart disease, kidney disease, diabetes and other weight-related health problems.  Today, more than HALF of all dogs and cats are obese and many pet owners fail to recognize that too many pounds can take years off of Fluffy’s or Fido’s life.

So TREAT your pet’s TREATS like TREATS.  And the next time your pet begs for more, get out the ball or birdie and make time for play instead.

AS ALWAYS, CONSULT WITH YOUR VETERINARIAN ABOUT YOUR PET’S OVERALL HEALTH AND WELLBEING.

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Tooth brushing can save money, improve pet’s oral health

If you were able to attend our dental care workshop: Preventing canine and feline dental disease, you heard Dr. Andrea Putt, of Commerce Village Veterinary Hospital, talk about the importance of BRUSHING your dog’s or cat’s teeth.  Dr. Putt  stressed the importance of DAILY brushing.  She also said that it’s not so much what is on the brush that matters– but the act of BRUSHING itself — that is most beneficial to your pet.  So if your pet loves delicious cat or dog food, peanut butter, soft cheese spread – or flavored pet toothpaste – BRUSH AWAY with any of them!   (Just NEVER use human toothpaste!)  Dr. Putt even mentioned that she sees one pet owner who flosses her Yorkie’s teeth!

Yorkie’s – as well as other small dogs – are way more prone to dental disease than mid-size and most big dogs, Dr. Putt said.  Also prone to dental problems are dogs with fine, narrow noses – such as Greyhounds and Collies.

Brushing can save money on your dog’s or cat’s dental care and also goes a long way to helping your pet maintain a healthy mouth and teeth.

Read more below about how to brush your pet’s teeth.  Just a few minutes each day can make a huge difference!

brushing Click here for a printable version.

Products that can prevent dental disease in your CAT

171_PawsitivelyHealthy_Dental_Health_Jan16_Flyer (2) CAT

Just like with dogs, there are some good products out there to help reduce plaque and tarter on cats’ teeth.  They include dental sprays and gels, chews and treats, and toothpaste for brushing. Click here for some of my favorites and a shopping list for your pet.

And just like I’ve pointed out for dogs, these products do NOT replace the need for regular veterinary exams.  Cats, like dogs, can get:

  • Broken and loose teeth
  • Gum disease
  • Oral and facial cancers
  • Root problems (why your pet needs dental x-rays!)

In addition, cats can get a SEVERELY PAINFUL dental problem called RESORPTIVE LESIONS.  These lesions often appear as red dots on the tooth and they can eat away at the rest of the tooth and root.  Teeth with the lesions are often very weak and prone to break.  Cats with resorptive lesions often have a difficult time eating and will drool or their mouth will “chatter” due to the pain.

So regular dental care for your cat is particularly important. To me, the best thing about oral care products is that they get pet owners to be more observant and take a better look at your pet’s mouth.

So while you are brushing your cat’s teeth – or wiping on that gel, be sure you to take a look at your cat’s mouth.  If you spot redness or something that doesn’t look right, contact your vet.

Find out what you can do at home to help prevent dental disease

Imagine if you never saw the dentist! Getting TEETH AND GUMS checked and cleaned is just as important as any other type of exam for your dog or cat. In fact, in some ways it may be more important since a LACK of good dental care can lead to serious illness – such as heart and kidney disease and more.

Join us on February 18 for our Pawsitively Healthy workshop Preventing Canine & Feline Dental Disease. Andrea Putt, DVM, of Commerce Village Veterinary Hospital will share her perspectives on this important topic including helpful tips on what you can DO AT HOME to help prevent dental disease. Click here to register.

Brushing your pet’s teeth, proper nutrition and regular veterinary check-ups are all things you can do to make sure your dog or cat has good oral health. Dr. Putt will share with you her thoughts on which products do the best job and how you can provide dental care at home to even the most temperamental pets.