My 10-year-old dog, healthy and active, has tartar. The veterinarian recommended cleaning that requires general anesthesia. Should I do it or not?


Tartar plates in dogs and cats are very common and this is due to the difficulty of a good daily oral asepsis.

Often, these tartar plaques develop into periodontal disease, which can cause anything from gingivitis to dental fistulas and even tooth loss.

The indication is to do the cleaning periodically, whenever plaque accumulation begins. This procedure is called prophylaxis and is offered by many veterinary centers. By doing this, you will avoid reaching the point of periodontal disease. In case the animal already has the most advanced condition of tartar, only prophylaxis will not be enough, making periodontal treatment necessary, which often results in the loss of some teeth.

A valid guideline is that in this case the procedure is performed by a veterinarian specializing in dentistry due to the specificity of the procedure and the need for specialized tools. The indication is that the procedure is done under general anesthesia with the animal intubated (intubation with endotracheal tube with cuff), because during the procedure liquids are used in the oral cavity and non-intubation can lead to pneumonia by aspiration of these fluids.

Hope this helps.

Dr. Answers

Video: Dental scaling with ultrasounds, incisor removing and haircut near the eyes in Yorkshire terrier dog (July 2021).