Dental problems with your pet will not just result in discomfort. When you consider that your dog needs their teeth for chewing, defence and even exploring their environment, you will quickly realise that oral health is crucial for their overall well-being—not to mention that leaving oral problems to fester can cause your dog to develop serious health issues too. While taking care of your dog's teeth by brushing them regularly is important, you should also know the following signs that your dog needs to see a veterinary dentist.
Bleeding or swollen gums
One of the first signs of possible oral problems with your dog is inflamed gums. Early-onset inflammation will usually manifest as swelling, so it is important to inspect your pet's gums on a regular basis. When the inflammation is not addressed, your dog may develop bleeding gums, and you could start noticing streaks of blood in their food bowl. Any bleeding should have you seeking an opinion from a veterinary dentist, since they will be best placed to diagnose the cause of the inflammation and recommend the right course of treatment. You should also be aware that bleeding means that there is the chance of bacteria making their way into your dog's bloodstream via the broken skin in the gum line.
Unusual lumps on the gums
Another cause for concern regarding your pet's oral health is the development of unusual lumps on their gums. The thing about growths is that you can never be too sure that they are harmless. Thus, even if your dog is not showing any signs of discomfort, it is best to have them examined by a veterinarian dentist. Some growths may be benign and could go away on their own. But in some cases, the lumps could be malignant and will need immediate removal. If the growths are cancerous, there is always the threat of the cancer spreading to other parts of your pet's body, so always keep a keen eye on any changes to your dog's gums.
Sudden onset drooling
Drool, granted, is commonplace with some dog breeds. Nonetheless, if you have had your dog for a few years, you should know what degree of drooling is classified as normal and what is excessive. When your dog experiences sudden-onset drooling, it could be indicative of an oral problem that is stimulating the production of extra saliva, or it could be limiting their ability to swallow their spit as normal. Since drooling can be a symptom of oral issues such as abscesses or gum disease, it is best to see a vet dentist.
To learn more, contact a veterinary dentistry facility like Adelaide Animal Emergency & Referral Centre.