One of the most painful things about canine teeth exams has to be dog dental cleaning costs. Why are the prices so high and what goes into a good teeth cleaning?
Most dogs exhibit some degree of periodontal disease by the time they reach three years of age. Gum disease can be mild, causing nothing more than a little redness and inflammation, but it can also be quite severe, leading to tooth loss and bone damage. Keeping your dog’s teeth clean is absolutely essential if you want to avoid these consequences – but dog dental cleaning costs could be keeping you away from the vets
Brushing your dog’s teeth is the best way to keep them clean, but you should also consider a professional cleaning from time to time. Keep reading to learn more about what is involved in a dog dental cleaning, why it costs so much, and how to maintain your dog’s dental health.
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Why Do Dog Dental Cleanings Cost So Much?
If you’re concerned about your dog’s dental health, you might want to talk to your veterinarian to see if he recommends a thorough cleaning. In addition to asking what is involved in the process, you should also ask about costs because these may vary. When it comes to the cost of a dog dental cleaning, you might be surprised – and not in a good way. A simple dental cleaning that takes 45 minutes to an hour could cost you several hundred dollars.
A few hundred dollars for a thorough dental cleaning that could restore your dog’s dental health may seem well worth it. Before you pull the trigger, however, you should realize that this won’t be your only cost. In addition to the cost of the cleaning itself, you’ll need to pay for x-rays and anesthesia – these are the factors that drive up the cost of dog dental cleanings. Your vet needs x-rays of your dog’s teeth to check the structure of the bones themselves and anesthesia is necessary to keep your dog still during the procedure. If your dog needs a root canal, extraction, or another procedure you could be looking at costs upwards of $2,000 to $3,000 in total.
What Does a Dog Dental Cleaning Involve?
Now that you have a better idea how much a dog dental cleaning costs, you may be wondering what exactly is involved in the procedure. Here’s what you can expect:
- The first step is to run some lab tests to make sure your dog is healthy enough for anesthesia – the lab results will also help your vet cater the anesthesia to your dog’s specifications.
- Your dog will be hooked up to an IV catheter to deliver anesthesia and fluids – he may also be given a pre-medication injection to relieve pain and calm him down.
- Once the dog is asleep, your vet will place a breathing tube to keep the airway open and to deliver oxygen and anesthetic gas.
- Your vet may begin with radiographs to view the structures of the teeth under the gums.
- The technician will rinse out the mouth and do a general inspection followed by manual plaque and tartar removal.
- Following the cleaning, the technician will look for signs of periodontal disease or other abnormalities, using the radiographs to review and inspect the mouth.
- If any extractions or other treatments are needed, these will be performed before the teeth are polished to smooth the surface and reduce plaque formation.
- To finish, the mouth is rinsed and dried then treated with fluoride foam.
Each veterinarian has their own way of doing things, and the procedure itself will be catered to your dog’s needs. Keep reading to learn how to preserve your dog’s dental health between cleanings.
Tips for Maintaining Your Dog’s Dental Health
Most veterinarians will recommend that you have your dog’s teeth professionally cleaned once a year. In between visits, however, there are some things you should do to help maintain your dog’s dental health. Here are some tips:
- After a cleaning, consider using a plaque prevention product once per week to maintain the benefits of your dog’s dental cleaning.
- Brush your dog’s teeth after every meal to remove food particles – make sure to use dog-friendly toothpaste.
- Make sure your dog’s diet supports his dental health – if he eats wet food, consider adding some dry food or use dental treats to help keep his teeth clean.
Want to keep dog dental cleaning costs down? When it comes to your dog’s dental health, it is never too early to start taking care of his teeth. Brush your dog’s teeth as often as you can and keep an eye on his oral health. Report any symptoms to your veterinarian and consider having his teeth cleaned professionally once a year.
Kate Barrington is the loving owner of two cats (Bagel and Munchkin) and a noisy herd of guinea pigs. Having grown up with golden retrievers, Kate has a great deal of experience with dogs but labels herself a lover of all pets. Having received a Bachelor’s degree in English, Kate has combined her love for pets and her passion for writing to create her own freelance writing business, specializing in the pet niche.