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“I`ve always felt that animals are the purest spirits in the world. They don’t fake or hide their feelings, and they are the most loyal creatures on earth. “ Pink

This is my 2nd week as a working veterinarian. Yesterday I got my name badge and my name on the consulting door with “veterinary surgeon” underneath. Such a surreal feeling. I made it, I made my dream since a little girl come true! I feel so privileged to have made it.

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I started my first day with my favourite subject: surgery. I did a couple of dog and cat castrations.  The rest of my first day I was asked to consult. I jumped right into the deep end and started consulting on my own on my first day. The reception was nice and scheduled in 20 minute consultations (instead of the normal 10min per patient) and also scheduled in fairly ok patients for me. I had a lot of vaccinations; booster vaccination, primary vaccinations of puppies, microchips and puppy litter checks.  I`ve seen a lot of ear infections- showing clients how to clean dog ears and dogs needing dentals. I know dental scale and polish can be expensive, but when your dog is 3-5 years and has a lot of dental tartar- you should as an owner prioritise this treatment for your pet. Postponing it will only make it worse! Your pet can get periodontal disease: which is both unpleasant and can result in your pet having to have its teeth out at a younger age than needed. When it gets to this stage it really is too late to brush its teeth. Brushing teeth is really a preventative measure which needs to be done preferably every night or every other night for it to have any affect. Both royal canine and Hills pet food supply a dental food diet, but again only part of the treatment for your dogs dental tartar. Recent studies have demonstrated that there is an association between oral health issues and systemic general health issues affecting the kidneys, heart and metabolic system.  Have you ever wondered why your dog`s breath smells? Bad breath in  pets can be cause by many health or behavioural reasons, but more likely due to lack of oral hygiene.

dental tartar

Plaque is a clear white film that forms on the outside of the teeth. It is formed by bacteria naturally found in the mouth. Tarter or calculus is formed when plaque is allowed to sit and mix with chemicals found in the dogs saliva. This quickly form a coating (made of bacteria) developing on the teeth and also under the gumline. Once tartar is formed, it is too hard to be removed by a toothbrush and require a dental scale and polish. Gingivitis is another big concern. The inflammation of the gums is the immune systems attempt to get rid of the infection from the tartar buildup. Which is the beginning stage of peridonal disease, if this is left uyntreated it can recess into the gumline, periodontal pockets and cause oral abscessed and tooth loss. Because the bacteria from the mouth can become blood born, it can also affect other organs of the body and therefore contribute to heart disease etc and therefore shorten the pets life.

Oral health is key to a long healthy life for our furry friends, not just dogs but cats as well. Think if you had tooth ace and didn’t go to the dentist? It would only get worse, well it’s the same with your pet. Instead of giving stuffed toys and treats for Christmas, why not give your pet a dental scale and polish if its breath smells?

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This week I had to trim the tooth of a hamster. Most pet rats and pet hamsters will not have a problem with their teeth during their lifetime. If your small pet is happily chewing on toys and food during the day, he will keep his teeth healthy and you will not need to trim them. However, if your furry friend hurts a tooth or becomes sick, it’s possible that tooth overgrowth or another problem will arise that will necessitate a tooth clipping.

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That’s me for now, write soon.

Love,

Annette

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