“Dang doc, my dog’s breath will knock my socks off!” That refrain, in its many forms, is heard in our examination rooms on a daily basis. This is more complaint or observation than it is a cry for help. There are still a large percentage of pet owners who feel that dental care for pets is more a cosmetic thing than a medical thing. That is a profound misconception. Good dental care reduces disease, lengthens lives, reduces pain and suffering and improves general quality of life for the pet (and owner who doesn’t have to be inundated with doggy breath).
When I went to veterinary college (more than 20 years ago), the sum total of hands-on time learning about dental disease in our domestic animals totaled a whopping 8 hours in a 4 year curriculum. Arguably 20+ years ago there were no veterinary dental specialists in Canada yet and thus who would have taught all of us fresh-faced and eager veterinary medical students. We (the veterinary profession) did not understand scientifically the ramifications of dental disease. It wasn’t long after I was in full time practice and after I started Valley Veterinary Services that I began seeing significant disease in my domestic animal patients that was attributable completely too dental pathology. Not addressing this underlying pathology just didn’t sit right with me and so I sought to rectify this.
Now some 20 years down the road I have extensive post-graduate dental training under specialist Dr. Loic Legendre and hundreds of hours of practical experience and a clinic full of the latest dental equipment to ensure that our patients can have their dental issues appropriately addressed. I insist that our technicians undergo additional dentistry training as well. One of our technicians, Sarah has recently completed several post-graduate dentistry courses to add to her technical experience which will further complement the dental services we provide. All of this is ultimately so that we can continue to provide the comprehensive expert care that our clients expect.
February is designated Dental Health Month in Canada and each February we at Valley Veterinary Services extend significant discounts including freebies and food (valued at over $100) to encourage people to have dentistry performed on their pets. And each February we are completely overwhelmed with requests for these appointments. If your pet is older than 3 years old and it has been more than a year since their last professional cleaning you may want to take advantage of the discounts and promotions this February. Call now (604-858-6560 or book your appointment on line by clicking here) so you do not miss out on this opportunity. Let us use the skills and abilities we have amassed to help your pets to live long, healthy and happy lives.
Posted by: Dr. Mark Steinebach