During the consultation they will apply an IC plaque Test to your animal’s mouth that will allow them and yourselves to see how much plaque is present on your pet’s teeth – as we all know, that’s what gives your teeth that ‘furry’ feeling in the morning! Plaque goes on to develop into tartar, which causes disease of the gums or gingivitis. Left to itself, gingivitis will continue to become PERIODONTAL DISEASE, an irreversible condition of the gums and underlying bone, which will result in the teeth having to be extracted.


As good oral health is an essential part of your pet’s well being, it is important that their teeth and gums are kept as healthy as possible. Bad teeth can worsen or cause heart and kidney disease, and result in your cat or dog being grumpy and eating poorly. In some situations, poor oral health is an indicator of more serious problems occurring internally, so any trouble in the mouth should not be ignored in the hope it will “go away”.

Written by: Suzanne Craig BVCs - Small Animal Vet, based at Balclutha and used in the local newspaper (The Leader) in the monthly Pet Corner section.