In my regular daily email from Dr. Becker at Mercola.com, I received this important information about dental cleanings for pets. I feel it is important to pass on to my readers.
"Effective November 1, the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) will mandate dental anesthesia and intubation for accredited veterinary hospitals. The new standard applies to all patients, and all dental procedures, including cleaning.
The 2013 AAHA Dental Care Guidelines for Dogs and Cats states, “general anesthesia with intubation is necessary to properly assess and treat the companion animal dental patient.” According to the guidelines, “Cleaning a companion animal’s teeth without general anesthesia is considered unacceptable and below the standard of care.”
The reason nonprofessional dental scaling (NPDS) isn’t ideal in most cases is because scraping and polishing the visible surface of the teeth doesn’t address tartar buildup below the gum line or gingivitis. Most dental disease first takes hold below the visible surfaces of your pet’s mouth.
Some pet parents are very concerned about putting their furry family member “under.” But general anesthesia delivered according to current standards of practice is safe for pets young and old, and even animals with systemic illness.
To help your dog or cat maintain a healthy mouth for a lifetime, remember to brush your pet’s teeth every day and feed a balanced, species-appropriate diet. "