Periodontitis is a type of gum disease in dogs that exist in four stages of progression of periodontal diseases. It can progress from simple plaque formation to mildly inflamed gums to established gum diseases, and even to severe periodontitis. The affected areas can have bone degradation to tooth loss.
Are teeth problems the same in dogs as in humans?
No, in humans, the prevalent dental issue is tooth decay that happens because of the loss of calcium from the enamel resulting in painful infected cavities. In canines, tooth decay is a rarity. The prevalent dental issues are as follows:
- Periodontal diseases
- Fractured teeth
Formation of Tartar & The issues
The mouth is a natural home to millions of organisms. As these bacteria multiply and spread on the surface of a tooth, they form a layer called biofilm which is not visible. Some biofilms are removed naturally by the dog’s chewing and frequent licking habits. If they remain on the tooth’s surface, the plaque thickens up, mineralizes up and creates tartar which further accumulates on top of the gum line leading to gingivitis. Further accumulation of biofilms will lead to severe periodontal ailments.
Future Complications if not diagnosed at the Initial Stage
Experts advise cleaning the plaque and dental calculus on the teeth on a regular basis. If not routinely cleaned, they can ignite a condition called gingivitis. It is painful inflammation of the gums, periodontal disease, and in the long run, even tooth loss. According to a recent research from some notable places, dogs with periodontal disease or PD are the best candidates for heart diseases as well as other forms of bodily organ damage.
PD do share a relationship with heart ailments because bacteria from the mouth continuously enters the bloodstream and gets into the arteries surrounding the heart. According to a notable research team, small dog breeds such as Dachshunds, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, and Toy Poodles suffer from this condition more frequently than other races.
- Issues in selecting food
- Bleeding gums & change in the color
- Sudden tooth fall
- Blood stains in the water bowl or on the toys
- Canine talking when a dog is having its food or having a yawning session
- Sudden lumps or bumps inside the mouth
- Bloody saliva
- Having head shyness
- The dog chews on one side of the mouth
- Occasional nasal discharge or congestion, with cold and cough
- An advancement in gum disease in the upper section of the teeth can damage the bones between the nasal and oral cavity and is visible through naked eyes
Periodontal ailments can be the result of a number of factors. Most common reasons are the Actinomyces and organisms. Toy breeds have crowded natural teeth which makes them prone to this condition. Dogs that frequently groom themselves have a higher risk of suffering from the disease. Also, reduced nutrition will contribute to the condition.
Diagnosis & Tests
The diagnosis and tests will involve some major procedures. If the results reveal distance in between the gingivitis-affected tooth and gum to be beyond two centimeters, the dog is believed to suffer from some form of abnormalities in the gum.
X-rays are crucial for diagnosing the periodontal disease as up to 60% of the symptoms hide below the gum line. In the initial stages, radiographic imaging reveals things like loss of density as well as the sharpness of the alveolar margin. In later advanced stages, it reveals loss of bone support across the root of the tooth with a periodontal issue.
The field of dentistry for dogs in relatively new and many of us have not even heard of it. It can happen that the dog may already have some gum ailments. Studies show that more than eighty percent of breeds may have some stages of gum ailments by the age of thirteen. If the issue is on progression, treatment will depend on the stage, though, at first, all treatments will require an X-ray to determine the presence of the disease.
- The first stage of gum ailments will involve mild redness or inflammation of the gums minus the periodontal pouches between the gum and tooth. For this stage, cleaning above and below the gum line is the only treatment.
- The second stage develops after the arrival of periodontal pouches between the gum and tooth, but before any involvement of the bones. In this case, the gum tissue and root will be cleaned, rinsed, and healed with a gel to help reattach the gum to the tooth root.
- The third stage happens when periodontal pouches around the teeth go more profound than a particular point which means there’s now a bone loss.
- The fourth stage happens when there’s bone loss over fifty percent. In that case, tooth extraction will be the only option.
Will a diet of dry dog food remove tartar?
Pet food manufacturers have introduced the new dental diets that can help reduce the formation of plaque and tartar in your dog.