What are the signs of dental disease? As all pet owners know, our pet’s health is very important. What most pet owners don’t know is that dental health can greatly affect a pet’s overall health. Periodontal disease can result in gingivitis, missing or loose teeth and oral pain. Furthermore, the bacteria that contributes to dental disease can circulate in the bloodstream and cause microscopic damage to the heart, liver and kidneys, according to the Veterinary Oral Health Council® (VOHC).
Some common signs of dental disease are:
• Bad breath
• Broken/missing teeth
• Discolored teeth or tartar build up
• Abnormal chewing
• Excessive drooling
• Reduced appetite or refusal to eat
• Tenderness or bleeding around the mouth
• Shying away from the mouth being touched
Your pet’s teeth should be looked at by your veterinarian at least once a year. The most effective way you can help with your pet’s oral health at home is brushing his/her teeth. The brushing action, whether applied with a tooth brush or a soft medical gauze, disrupts the bacterial biofilm that leads to gum disease and tooth decay.
You can purchase pet tooth brushes and pet tooth pastes (do not use tooth paste meant for humans) at your local pet store or your veterinarian. Dental treats approved by the VOHC® can also be helpful for pets in good body weight. You can find a list of approved treats here: https://www.vohc.org/all_accepted_products.html
If you have any questions or concerns about your pet’s oral health, or you would like tips on how to brush your pet’s teeth, call us at (610) 494-5800.
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Please help us find this dog’s owner!!
A female pit bull mix was found in the Brookhaven area on Creek Road next to the swim club. She does not appear to be spayed and looks to have had a litter of puppies. She is approximately 45 pounds and she is light brown with no microchip. She’s very friendly. If you have any information or know who her owner might be, please contact Shana at 610-848-8530.
National Dog Biscuit Day is Tuesday, February 23, so celebrate your best friend with a special treat! Biscuits are a good way to reward and train your pet, but in moderation. Be sure to check calorie content of their treats and incorporate them into your pet’s dietary needs. Break the biscuit into multiple pieces because even a small piece of a biscuit serves as a reward to your pet. You may also consider low calorie options like frozen green beans.
As winter approaches, it is important to remember some of the dangers that colder weather presents to our pets. Pets are susceptible to hypothermia and frostbite when they are not adequately sheltered from the cold and should be kept indoors in colder temperatures.
Outdoor cats often seek shelter under the hood of cars and can be severely injured by fan belts and other engine parts, so please bang on the hood to scare them out before starting your car. Antifreeze can have a sweet taste, leading to potentially deadly ingestion by pets. Please keep all antifreeze out of the reach of your pets and dilute and cover any spills right away. Salt used to melt ice can be irritating to the paws and harmful if ingested, so wipe your pet’s paws clean after any exposure to salt, antifreeze or other chemicals.
National Black Cat Appreciation Day was yesterday, August 17. Did you know that black animals are less likely to be adopted than their light-colored shelter mates? Black cats are often overlooked by potential adopters because of old myths and superstitions that they are bad luck. Please remember that these beliefs are not true! A black cat could be the perfect addition to your family.
The lower adoptability of black pets is known as Black Dog Syndrome. In addition to superstitious beliefs of black cats, black pets are also less likely to be adopted because of size, unclear facial features, the “genericness” of black pets, and more. Fight the stigma and adopt a black cat (or dog) today!
The doctors and technicians at Aston Veterinary Hospital are committed to lifetime learning. This allows them to continually enhance their knowledge and skills and learn the most up-to-date information about various topics to better help your pets.
Several staff members have recently attended continuing education conferences. Dr. Becker returned from the AAHA Conference in Tampa, Florida, where she attended lectures about emergency and critical care medicine. Dr. Hiller went to the Penn Annual Conference in Philadelphia and attended lectures about dermatology and endocrinology. Two of our technicians, Liza and Mary Anne, also attended the Penn Conference and listened to lectures about ophthalmology and blocked cats.
As the year goes on, our staff will continue to attend different conferences. Our primary goal is to provide your pets the best veterinary care. Test our knowledge and ask us some questions.