February is Dental Health Month!

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                    THANK YOU!
We want to give a big thank you to all of our clients who sent in photos of their pets for our holiday flip-a-gram!  As a thank you, we are donating dog and cat food to local organizations.  Our dog food donations will be given to the Haddam and East Haddam Animal Control Offices.  The cat food will be given out to Catales and Forgotten Felines.

We are also now a drop box location for the Catales organization.  Please bring any cat food donations to our clinic, thank you!

         To Those Who Help Others
We want to take a moment to thank those who help others.  We have one client in particular who donates money, whenever she is able, and simply asks that we use it to help someone truly in need.  We have been able to help a number of clients who love their pets, but did not have the financial resources to fully provide care for their pet.  So thank you to this person, and to all of you have helped and supported fellow pet owners in need.

                                                                  We Are Two Years Old!
Adorable Pets Veterinary Center has now been open for two years!  We just wanted to take a moment to thank all of you for trusting us with the health of your pets.  We are excited to be starting our third year!

            Dr. Bernie's Corner

Here is a great article written by Deanne Bonner, RVT, CVPM!

Halitosis (bad breath): It’s a problem that many pet owners are all too familiar with. What some pet owners are unaware of, however, is that bad breath is often an indication that much more is going on within their pet’s mouth.

The majority of cats and dogs over the age of 3, approximately 85 percent, have some form of periodontal or dental disease. Similar to humans, pets accumulate plaque on a daily basis. Plaque is made of 90 percent microscopic bacteria, which over time, hardens and becomes what we call tartar or calculus. This bacteria and tartar can lead to gingivitis (gum inflammation), which is the body’s response to the unhealthy bacteria. When the gum tissue is unhealthy, it often progresses to periodontal disease, bone loss at the root of the tooth, and eventually tooth loss.

Poor oral hygiene affects more than just the mouth. Infection in the mouth can enter the bloodstream, damaging the kidney, heart, and other organs. Infected teeth and gums are often quite painful, yet many pets are able to continue to eat and drink even with severe dental disease, so a lack of appetite is not always the best indicator of a problem.

What to expect when your pet gets her teeth cleaned
It is important to recognize that we can only see a portion of each tooth—sometimes only half of the tooth is exposed above the gum line. Advanced disease often hides in the roots of the teeth, below the gum tissue. A comprehensive dental cleaning should be done when your veterinarian recommends it, and it should include scaling of each tooth (both above and below the gum line), thorough evaluation of each tooth, measuring any gum recession, and taking X-rays. Once all disease is addressed, the cleaning should be followed by a high-speed polishing to help fill the small grooves created in the enamel by cleaning and normal wear. General anesthesia should be used in order to effectively clean below the gums, obtain radiographs, and prevent the pet from swallowing any bacterial debris that is being removed.

Prevention is key
Regular teeth brushing at home can greatly improve oral health, reducing or preventing periodontal disease, and improving overall health. At your pet’s next veterinary visit, speak with your veterinarian about a comprehensive oral assessment and treatment plan—it could mean the difference between a healthy pet and not-so-healthy pet.

Deanne Bonner, RVT, CVPM, has worked in the veterinary profession since 1985. She enjoys working for the American Animal Hospital Association as a veterinary practice consultant. Deanne is passionate about improving client communication so pet owners can make educated health care choices and be advocates for their companion animals.


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