Our team continues to be here for you and your cherished pets. We are OPEN and are now able to provide a wide range of services. To learn more about the changes we have implemented in response to COVID-19 and what to expect during your next visit, click here.

Cat Dental Care

Did you know that 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have oral disease by age 3? When you consider that we brush twice a day and still see a dentist twice a year, it isn’t a surprise that dental health is essential for every cat! It is their most often diagnosed health problem. We know that poor dental health leads to infection in the mouth. It not only causes pain and lack of appetite, but it can also be detrimental to other parts of the body, such as the liver, heart, and kidneys, causing serious disease.

What is involved in a dental cleaning procedure?

If your cat has bad breath, swollen or bleeding gums, or other dental problems, we can help. A complete dental cleaning is required if your pet already has dental disease. It involves an evaluation of the oral cavity and cleaning of not only the surface of the teeth, but also underneath the gumline where the majority of bacteria and tartar are found. After the teeth are cleaned, they are polished, which smooths the rough surface created by the cleaning. Without polishing, these irregular surfaces allow bacteria and plaque to adhere more easily and accelerate the recurrence of dental disease. Next, an antibacterial solution is flushed below the gum line to remove any debris that collected after the scaling and polishing. Lastly, the entire mouth is rechecked, and digital dental x-rays may be used to assess the extent of the dental disease and the need for tooth extractions or additional work. Even though most people can tolerate and sit through a thorough dental cleaning, pets can’t. The only way to perform a complete dental cleaning in pets is by using general anesthesia. During the procedure, a registered veterinary technician continually assesses your pet’s vital signs, and we use several monitoring devices during your pet’s anesthetic.

What are the signs of dental problems in cats?

Cats are true hunters and predators, so it can be difficult to know if your cat already has dental disease. During your cat’s annual exam, we will do our best to look for signs of any oral health problems. At home, some behaviours you may notice are not eating/decreased appetite, drooling, bad breath, tilting their head when eating, or small bits of kibble left behind when your cat bites the kibble and drops pieces due to pain. If you have any concerns about your pet’s oral health, it is best to let our dedicated team help.

Are some feline breeds more susceptible than others?

Certainly, any breed with a smaller nose can be more susceptible, as there is just less space for the teeth to be and with overcrowding comes the risk of dental disease. However, every cat is different, and oral health care is important for all of them.

What is feline tooth resorption?

Feline tooth resorption is the correct medical term for what many people call “kitty cavities”. These painful lesions occur when the tooth-root surfaces are destroyed and the enamel resorbs, exposing pulp and nerves. As these lesions are painful, we recommend treatment as soon as possible. In most patients, this will require the extraction of the affected tooth. If your cat has these lesions, your veterinarian will help you determine which treatment option is best for you and your pet.

COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

Note: If you are experiencing respiratory symptoms, please let us know when you book your pet’s appointment. As the potential to spread to pets is still relatively unknown, it is possible that your pet could create a risk to other people who may be handling him or her. Whenever possible, please send someone who is not experiencing respiratory symptoms to the appointment with your pet.

The following changes are effective as of Tuesday, March 17, 2020:

1. We are currently operating a “closed waiting room” policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain in your vehicle and use your cell phone to call us at 604-526-0334. We will bring your pet into the clinic for an examination with the veterinarian. We will then call you on your cell phone to discuss the issues with your pet, and you will have a telemedicine consult with the veterinarian to discuss further diagnostics required or a treatment plan for your pet. Following the end of the appointment, we will return your pet to your vehicle. If you do not have a cell phone, please knock on our door to let us know you have arrived and then return to your vehicle.

2. We are continuing to accept appointments for urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations. Where possible, we will do our best to accommodate annual vaccinations; however, all other services will be scheduled for a later time.

3. We are still OPEN with the following hours:
Monday – Friday: 8:30 am – 6:30 pm
Saturday & Sunday: 9:00 am - 4:30 pm

4. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 2-4 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the hospital. Our staff will bring your order to your car and take payment over the phone. You can also use our online store and have your food delivered directly to your home. To sign up for the online store, visit our website.

5. Online consultations are now available! If you wish to connect with a veterinarian via message, phone or video, visit our website and follow the "Online Consultation" link.

Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our roles. As such, we have taken measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.

In these uncertain times, please see the below link for the most recent information for the public on COVID-19 and animals from the Government of Canada (specifically the Canadian Food Inspection Agency).

https://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

- Your dedicated team at South Burnaby Veterinary Hospital