Loving Care Animal Hospital

Pet Dental Services in Palatine

Pet dental hygiene is an important part of your pet's health because dental disease can be associated with other serious health problems such as heart disease and kidney disease. But how do you know if your pet has a healthy mouth? Let us examine your pet’s teeth and gums to help determine if there are any dental issues you should know about. After a brief visual examination, we may recommend a more detailed examination (which requires sedation), a dental cleaning, or options for at-home dental care.

Dental Examinations

Just like humans, pets can develop dental issues that can lead to serious health problems if left untreated. That's why regular dental examinations are crucial for your pet's overall wellness.

Why Are Dental Exams Important for Pets?

Prevention of Dental Issues

Regular dental exams can help prevent dental issues from developing in the first place. During a dental exam, your veterinarian will check for signs of plaque, tartar, and other dental problems. Catching these issues early on can prevent them from becoming more serious and costly to treat.

Early Detection of Dental Problems

Just like humans, pets can develop dental issues such as cavities, gum disease, and tooth decay. These problems can be painful for your pet and can lead to more serious health issues if left untreated. During a dental exam, your veterinarian will thoroughly examine your pet's teeth and gums to detect any potential problems. Early detection can save your pet from unnecessary pain and discomfort.

Improved Overall Health

Poor dental health can have a significant impact on your pet's overall health. Bacteria from dental issues can enter the bloodstream and affect other organs, leading to serious health problems. Regular dental exams can help prevent these issues and keep your pet healthy and happy.

Schedule a dental exam for your pet today and give them the gift of good dental health.

Signs That Your Pet May Need a Dental Cleaning

It's important to pay attention to your pet's dental health and look out for any signs that they may need a dental cleaning. Some common signs include:

  • Bad breath
  • Difficulty eating or chewing
  • Excessive drooling
  • Red or swollen gums
  • Loose or missing teeth
  • Discolored teeth
  • Bleeding from the mouth
  • Changes in eating habits or weight loss

If you notice any of these signs, it's important to schedule a dental cleaning for your pet as soon as possible.

Pet Dental Cleaning

If your pet has a buildup of plaque and tartar, we may recommend a professional teeth cleaning. A pet dental cleaning is a thorough and comprehensive process that is typically performed by a veterinarian. Here's what you can expect during a pet dental cleaning:


In order to properly clean your pet's teeth and perform any necessary procedures, they will need to be under anesthesia. This ensures their safety and comfort during the cleaning.

Oral Exam

Before the cleaning begins, the veterinarian will perform a thorough oral exam to assess the overall health of your pet's mouth. This may include taking x-rays to check for any underlying issues.


Once your pet is under anesthesia, the veterinarian will use special tools to remove plaque and tartar from your pet's teeth. This process is called scaling and is similar to the cleaning you receive at the dentist.


After scaling, the veterinarian will polish your pet's teeth to remove any remaining plaque and smooth the surface of the teeth. This helps prevent plaque from building up again in the future.

Fluoride Treatment

To help protect your pet's teeth, the veterinarian may apply a fluoride treatment to their teeth. This helps strengthen the enamel and prevent tooth decay.


If your pet has severely damaged or infected teeth, the veterinarian may need to extract them. This is done to prevent further pain and infection and improve your pet's overall dental health.

Post-Cleaning Care

After the cleaning is complete, your pet will be monitored as they wake up from anesthesia.

What to Expect After a Pet Dental Cleaning

After a pet dental cleaning, you can expect your pet to have clean, healthy teeth and fresh breath. They may also have more energy and be more playful, as they are no longer in pain or discomfort from dental issues.

It's important to continue to monitor your pet's dental health and schedule regular cleanings to maintain their oral health. Your veterinarian may also recommend specific dental products or treatments to help keep your pet's teeth and gums healthy.

How to Prepare Your Pet for a Dental Cleaning

If your pet is scheduled for a dental cleaning, there are a few things you can do to help prepare them for the procedure:

  • Fast your pet for 12 hours before the cleaning, as anesthesia can cause nausea and vomiting.
  • Make sure your pet has access to water up until the time of the cleaning.
  • Bring any medications your pet is currently taking to the appointment.
  • Discuss any concerns or questions with your veterinarian beforehand.

Dental Radiography

In some cases, we may recommend taking x-rays of your pet's teeth. This can help detect any underlying dental issues that may not be visible during a visual examination. X-rays can also help us determine the best course of treatment for your pet.

At-Home Dental Care

Based on the results of the dental exam, your veterinarian will create a treatment plan for your pet. This may include recommendations for at-home dental care, such as brushing your pet's teeth, and any necessary follow-up appointments.

At-home dental care tips include:

Brushing Your Pet's Teeth

Pets can benefit from regular teeth brushing. Use a pet-specific toothbrush and toothpaste to brush your pet's teeth at least a few times a week. This can help prevent plaque and tartar buildup and keep your pet's teeth and gums healthy.

Providing Dental Chews and Toys

Chewing on dental chews and toys can help keep your pet's teeth clean and healthy. These products are designed to help remove plaque and tartar from your pet's teeth while they chew. Just be sure to choose products that are appropriate for your pet's size and breed.

Choosing a Dental-Friendly Diet

Some pet foods are specifically formulated to promote dental health. These foods are designed to help remove plaque and tartar from your pet's teeth while they eat. Talk to us about the best diet for your pet's dental health.

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