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.

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Hands performing dental care to a cat with its mouth open.

Cat Dental Care

Dental care is a vitally important facet of your cat’s overall health. We recommend offering regular dental treats, dental diets, water additives and brushing your cat’s teeth (twice daily is ideal). We offer dental cleanings similar to what your dentist provides for you. We require our feline patients under anesthesia for dentistries. It allows us the ability to properly examine the inside of the mouth, thoroughly clean the teeth, take diagnostics radiographs and perform extractions (depending on the condition of the teeth).

What is involved in a dental cleaning procedure?


A dental cleaning procedure requires the animal to be under a general anesthetic.
1. We inspect the mouth for any obvious issue that would keep us from proceeding.
2. The technicians begin the process of scaling (cleaning) the teeth and charting any abnormalities they find. They are evaluating whether the teeth have abnormal wiggling and/or have any pockets around the gumline.
3. Radiographs are taken to evaluate the roots of the teeth. It is in combination with the abnormalities noted in step 2 determine which teeth need to be extracted.
4. Before beginning the process of extracting teeth, we perform local blocks just like our dentists do. This helps to reduce pain after the procedure.
5. The teeth are extracted and gingival flaps may or may not be performed depending on the void left after removing the tooth.
6. We then re-radiograph the teeth to ensure no tooth fragments were left after the extraction.
7. The technician then polishes the remaining teeth.
8. Your cat is then taken off the anesthetic and recovered. We then write our discharge instructions, prepare the pain medications and potentially antibiotics for you to take home.

What are the signs of dental problems in cats?


Some common signs to watch for that may alert you that your cat is having dental issues is a decrease in eating, foul breath, favouring one side of the mouth while chewing, pawing at the face, drooling and a reluctance to be touched around the mouth area. Other physical signs include red and inflamed gums, heavy tartar build-up and small red coloured lesions on the teeth, which indicates dental problems that require veterinary attention.

Are some feline breeds more susceptible than others?


All breeds of cats are susceptible.

What is feline tooth resorption?


Tooth resorption is the process where a cat’s body absorbs its own teeth. This process is very painful because the cat’s teeth are weakened and the internal nerve is stimulated more, which often elicits pain. With time, if the tooth is not removed, it will dissolve below the gumline.

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Most cats have 18 toes; five toes on each of their front feet, and four on the back.  My cat, Mandy Pawtinkin, is blessed with 22 toes.  She has a congenital physical anomaly called polydactyly (Greek for ‘many digits’).  It is a genetic mutation that causes cats to be born with more than the usual number of toes on one or more of its paws.

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Last updated: September 8, 2020

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we are pleased to advise that effective June 5, 2020 the restrictions on veterinary practices have been lifted. Based on these changes, below are some important updates to our operating policies.

1. WE CAN NOW SEE ALL CASES BY APPOINTMENT ONLY

This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, heartworm testing, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!

2. SAFETY MEASURES TO KEEP EVERYONE SAFE

3. OPERATING HOURS

Beginning June 8, we will be resuming our normal business hours:

Monday - Friday: 7:30 am – 8:00 pm
Saturday: 8:00 am - 2:00 pm
Sunday: Closed


NEW PET OWNERS

Have you welcomed a new furry family member to your home? We’d love to meet them! Visit our Must Know New Pet Owner Information page for useful resources and helpful recommendations for new pet owners.

Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- Your dedicated team at Halifax Veterinary Hospital