Home pet care for dogs and cats that save on veterinary expenses – Part 4

As an experienced veterinary technician with over 10 years working in this field, I can say that a lot of the money you pay at the vet to clean your pet’s teeth can be avoided just by following a few simple steps. 20 years ago was considered inappropriate and even crazy to brush a cat’s teeth! But as we develop new views in science and veterinary medicine, pets dental care became an interest for more people and, let’s admit, a great income for the veterinarian! If your pet goes under general anesthesia, you will be asked to also pay for pre-anesthetic blood work, IV fluids, maybe an X-ray, just to make sure everything goes well while the animal is under. So said, your trip to the vet can cost you over $1000.

It is important to check your pet’s teeth every year; try to avoid paying for the consultation twice. Ask your vet to take a look in your pet’s mouth when going to the clinic for the annual check up or for vaccines. It is the perfect time to ask also for an estimate and don’t forget to ask how much it costs for each extraction. Most vets do not include in their prices the extractions, just the dental cleaning!

Over 65% of cats and over 45% of dogs develop dental problems over the age of 3(plaque, tartar, gingivitis). If left unattended, these can cause very damaging problems, including heart attack, kidney, liver and intestinal issues. At that point your budget will drop deep down.

I will teach you a few tips about how to avoid spending excessive amounts of money. First of all, if you have a puppy or a kitten, start dental care at home at very early age. Brush their teeth! Use special small brushes for cats and regular(even human) tooth brushes for dogs. Do not use mint flavour paste, your pets do not really like it! The are on the market lots of flavours – cats seem to like fish and chicken flavours; dogs go for vanilla and candy aromas!

Second tip – do not feed them too much wet food! Choose a good brand of dry food and give them wet just as a treat! A little secret – cats will stop eating the dry food at one point, waiting for you to open that can!

I would also recommend to buy these foods from the veterinarians; I know for sure that they are designed by the vets and those companies spend a great amount of money on research, so trust them! A lot of diets (T/D or Dental Formula) contain specific enzymes that dissolved in saliva, help cleaning the teeth and refreshing the breath! Do not be cheap on foods, you will end up paying more and more often at the vet!

Use water additives(Aquadent for ex), you can find this at the vet also. You can try the dental treats from CET, great brand on the market in this filed.

Take your pet for regular dental cleaning and polishing every 2-3 years. This will save you a lot of money, their breath won’t bother you when they give you those irresistible kisses!

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