Many pet owners don’t realize that there are dental specialists who work primarily with animals. Veterinary dentists specialize in pets’ oral healthcare. Pets benefit from regular dental check-ups and oral care just as people do, and there are many products on the market made to promote good oral healthcare for animals. This article explains how to find the best dental supplies for veterinary dentists and pet owners who wish to provide preventative care at home.
Major pet stores carry numerous pet food products that claim to promote healthy teeth and gums. These formulas contain balanced nutrient content and additional ingredients that help to clean an animal’s teeth.
According to Pet MD, most hard food products made for dental diets have larger kibbles with an airy, fibrous texture that breaks easily. These pieces help to scrape plaque off the surface of teeth, reducing tartar build-up that can lead to gingivitis and periodontitis.
Before purchasing or recommending a dental diet product for pets, look for the Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) seal of approval on the box or bag. This organization is not a formal regulatory agency, but is made up of qualifier veterinary dental specialists who test the quality of pet dental products. If the product does not have this seal, it may not be effective.
Dental Toys and Chews
Chew toys can be good for a pet’s teeth and gums, since it promotes salivation and helps to remove food and plaque from the mouth. Many small mammals, like rodents and lagomorphs, also require something to chew in order to keep their teeth from becoming overgrown.
As with pet foods, look for the VOHC seal of approval before purchasing chew toys and dental chews that are marketed for dental care. Dogs and cats should never be given rigid items like bones or hard plastic, since these products can result in tooth fractures and other dental problems.
Dental Equipment and Dental Tools
Many of the dental tools dentists use in regular practice are also use in veterinary medicine, including dental hand pieces. To find the best dental supplies for veterinary dentistry, look to the same brands recognized for overall quality in dentistry. Some dental handpiece repair parts suppliers cater to veterinary dentists, and it is worth inquiring whether a company has sales representatives who deal primarily with veterinary specialists.