Pet Dental Health…It’s More Important Than You Realize

Written by: Cierra Voelkl

207cea2b-c362-493f-a2a6-1eb6ce922646Photo Credit: Partridge Animal Hospital

Did you know that February is National Pet Care Dental Month? Well you do now! Dental care in your pets is more important than you probably realize. It is an important factor to your pup’s health. Plus, if they are in pain from a toothache, this can bring unneeded stress and pain into their life. On top of that, the bacteria from untreated teeth issues can enter the bloodstream which can later affect the heart, liver and kidneys. No one wants their pup in pain or a large vet bill! Don’t fret, this is all preventable with routine dental care and just keeping an eye on your furbaby’s teeth! Here are a few ways to keep their mouth fresh, shiny and plaque free.

1. Start getting your dog used to brushing their teeth at home. Some dogs will take to this a lot better than others, and treats might need to be used for coaxing. It’s best to introduce them to the idea as a puppy but if you have a newer pup you adopted as an adult, if they are up for it, it’s never too late to teach them about dental care.

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Photo Credit: topdogtips.com

2. Annual cleanings done by your vet can help keep those pearly whites shining! Although, the risks of undergoing general anesthesia must be discussed with your vet first to decide if your pup is healthy enough for this. Luckily, a new form of gentle, non-anesthetic dental cleaning is becoming increasingly available that is pain free and simple but still effective. When it comes down to it, it’s all about what is safest and poses the least amount of risk for your dog. Very scary stories have come out of both scenarios as with any kind of health related procedure. Make sure to choose your vet wisely, selecting an experienced professional who has a wonderful reputation that you trust. While saving money can be important, so is the health of your best friend, whose well being should come first. When it comes to anesthesia free cleaning, vets speak out that one of the biggest risks is using sharp instruments in a dog’s mouth who won’t sit still. Imagine if you went to the dentist for a filling and they tried doing it while you wriggled about and growling? Wouldn’t be fun for either of you! Now imagine your dog as he really has absolutely no idea what’s going on. Overall, this is still a great alternative for dogs who can’t undergo anesthesia and still need regular cleaning every six months to a year. But this is NOT recommended currently by the American Veterinary Dental College due to the risks of injury.

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Photo Credit: fortmcmurrayanimalhospital.com

3. Anyone who has tried to do literally anything to a cat knows that there’s a 98% chance that you’ll come out of the situation with an arm full of bite marks and scratches. So how are you supposed to keep your cat’s pearly whites clean? Just like in dogs, foul breath can be a sign of gum disease or rotting teeth so the top thing to do is be diligent! This means yearly dental checks by the vet during your normal checkup. If you can start them young, start a regular teeth cleaning routine just like with puppies but if you must start as an adult, be patient and try dipping your finger in tuna juice and rubbing it on their gums to get them used to the feeling. Special toothpaste is made for them as the fluoride toothpaste that we use can make them severely ill if ingested. Weirdly enough, massaging their gums can help prevent gum disease which helps heal the gums and strengthen them.

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Photo Credit: petmd.com

4. When it comes to alternatives, there are many that can act as a replacement or an additive to your pet’s dental routine. For both dogs and cats, giving them something to chew on to help knock tartar off. And yes, this is for cats, too! But avoid pork, fish and chicken bones along with raw instead of cooked as that can splinter. Water additives are also available for both of them to help reduce plaque and keep their breath minty fresh! Specialty treats, like Greenies, are also available for consumption and available in numerous flavors so they will be sure to enjoy them!

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Photo Credit: petmd.com

5. Now it’s time to debunk some of those myths you’re probably thinking about right now. First off, dry food is NOT effective against periodontal disease. Ok, yes, it is MINIMALLY effective but not enough to where you get away with no other dental care. Next, just because your dog likes to eat his own poop doesn’t mean bad breath is normal in dogs. Bad breath is often a sign of rotting teeth and significant oral infection. And bringing it back to one of the topics earlier, non-anesthetic dental cleaning is NOT necessarily safer and cheaper than traditional cleanings. The level of injury for both dog and those performing the cleaning increases significantly. “The issue of cost is also a proposed benefit of NAD cleanings over traditional anesthetized cleanings. However, under closer examination, it is generally more expensive than traditional cleaning. In southern California, the initial NAD procedure can run from $75 to $125, with monthly maintenance of $35 to $65. This means that the first year of care can amount to $460 to $840. In contrast, an annual cleaning in a general practice is typically $400 to $600 and, in my specialty practice, averages $700 before radiographs” (http://todaysveterinarypractice.navc.com/pet-dental-health-month-debunking-common-myths-about-periodontal-disease/).

If you don’t know where to get started, check with your local vet to see if they offer dental cleanings but it’s not just vets that offer this. In Los Angeles, places like The Urban Pet and Adopt and Shop both offer non-anesthetic cleanings using different methods. Now, get out there and take care of those teeth! No excuses now!

 

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#WINNING

One of our beloved pack members, Zeus, just turned three years young – and he wants to celebrate with YOU!

For his birthday, he and his mama Elisa are hosting a giveaway for some lucky winners!

YOU could win some of our swag – one tote, one Poopcase®, one pack of Poopy Packs®, a Love and Licks® tee and two tennis balls – and others’ as well!!

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PHASE 1: (April 16th – May 6th)

  • Follow @zeus_goldenretriever on Instagram by TOMORROW the 16th – make sure your profile is visible to the public!
  • Follow us on Instagram – as well as the other pawsome sponsors: @badtags @bronsyandco @kongcompany @lassodogs @naturaldogcompany @nina_ottosson @oceanandsalt @oliveandatlas @orijenpetfood @paneladabela @pawstruckpets @unleashthehounds.
  • Post pictures with any of the following themes: “nature”, “fun”, “happiness”, “sports activities”, “in movement”, “action”, etc. The more creative, the better!
  • In the caption, write “This is my entry for #zeusbirthdaycontest2016 @zeus_goldenretriever.”
  • In the comments below, tag at least 5 of your pals you think would like to participate!
  • Keep in mind you can have unlimited entries and your pics don’t have to be new, but each entry has to be a new post or a re-post!

We can’t wait to have some fun celebrating Zeus’ b-day! Entries are valid only from tomorrow through May 6, so have at it until Phase 2 – which will come later! WOOF!

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Thanks, Mia!

So with the recent launch of our pawtastic Metro Pads™, Mommy, Daddy and Auntie Ashley are more excited than ever to get feedback on ’em.  They’ve worked super hard at getting their vision right and making them, so if you have anything to say about them, please let ’em know!!

Ms. Mia Hernandez of NYC (my hometown woop woop!) was so nice and wrote us a kind lil email about what she – and her pooch Duchess – thinks of them!!

Her letter:

This past weekend was SUPER COLD in New York City.  Winter is the perfect time to have pads handy for my Duchess.  As soon as we received the shipment, I swapped out old pads for the new ones.  One thing I noticed right away was the thickness and size of the Metro Pads.  Not every pad i’ve been able to purchase locally has met a “standard” length.  The pads covered the entire tray with extra length to tuck and did not slip (I didn’t need the stickers included in box),  which can become an issue after my dog hops off.  Also, I think the thickness of the pads gave her more stability when conducting her business – I didn’t hear her steps circling the tray/pad  (tmi lol).  The stripe design and color is a perfect camouflage for her urine spots too.  I’ve yet to use the other patterns in the box.
The Paw Pads are great and I can’t wait to see them in local stores.  Thank you again for getting them out to me.
Have a great week!
Mia & Duchess
A yappy shoutout to Mia and Duchess for this pawmazing note!  We could not be more grateful or happy that you guys enjoy them.  As for me, I wish I could try ’em out but apparently I’m a lil too old… 😦
Anyway, signing off for now.. until next time! Keep those letters coming! WOOF!
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THEY HAVE ARRIVED!

Hey y’all!

So they are finally here… the long-awaited Metro Pads™!  We finally received and unloaded the shipment at our warehouse yesterday, and boy are we excited!

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So those of you who are loyal pack members know we’ve been talking about them for what seems like forever now.  But look for them in the next coming days, as they are hitting the shelves THIS WEEKEND!

Find them in your local store!  Or, if your local store doesn’t have them… ask for them!!  They’re the only designer, leak-proof pee-pee pads that come in three chic and different prints – with 20 percent more value, they’re truly THE pad for your pad.

We want to say sorry again for the delay, but we can’t wait for you to get your paws on ’em!

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Yappy New Year!

OK, so it’s 2016 and we are so excited.  First things first: Mama was adopted!  Which is good, but me, Mitzy and of course lil bro Taco are very sad about it.  She was becoming like a lil sis to me, and she was so fun to romp around with.  I know Mommy and Daddy miss her lots, but they are happy that Daddy’s best friend was the one who adopted her.  And now, she lives in this place called Vancouver, Canada (apparently that’s a different “country”?).  I know Tacquito is going crazy – he really misses her a ton, but hopefully we will be seeing her soon. 🙂

ANYWAY.  There are so many things to be excited about in 2016!

It’s an election year, so of course we’re bringing back our #SMEARCAMPAIGN – basically we make our high-quality, eco-friendly designer poop bags for the election with each candidate’s face!  The 2012 campaign with Obama and Romney was a huge success, get a taste of it here!

We’re also super excited to be finally introducing our METROPADS®, which will be hitting retail floors next month!!  So fear not – in just a few weeks you will have a replacement for your “diaper”-looking pee pads on your floor – with our new leak-proof, eco-friendly and super strong DESIGNER pads.

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And of course, stay with us to be in the loop of all our trade shows, events and super cool things we’re gonna be a part of this year!  If you know someone who wants to subscribe to our weekly email blasts to be in the know of exclusive contests and giveaways and shows and all that good stuff, email me at stone@metropaws.com to let me know!

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HO HO HO!

Hey everyone!  I’m back!

So I’m real excited because it’s our favorite time of the year… and Mommy and Daddy are saying that we are “expanding our footprint” in L.A.!

This is great because Mommy and Daddy are busy, and when they’re busy it makes me get into the mood of wanting to be busy as well… so of course, I’m just with everyone romping around, hanging out with sissy and lil bro, and occasionally giving them advice.

Last week was Pet Winter Wonderland, and it was a BLAST!  Mommy and Daddy said we really expanded our pack.  And to remind all of y’all, if you ever want to join our pack and stay in the loop of all our shenanigans, email stone@metropaws.com to let me know!!

But hey, if you’re in L.A…. keep an eye out for our NEWEST pack member location!  We can’t wait to show ya… we’ll just say it’s a “one stop shop” for everything. 😉

Catch ya on the flip side!

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Mama!

So our house is PACKED now with Mama (that’s the rescue from the warehouse parking lot!) and the rest of us romping around all the time.

Thanksgiving was a fun time!  It was PAWLICIOUS – Mommy and Daddy gave me and the sibs a lil turkey and sweet potato… YUM YUM!!!  Everyone was so excited.

Now Mommy and Daddy say “Christmas” is coming up, now that it is a new month… so they are always playing Christmas music around the house.  Which is nice, because Taco, Mitzy, Mama and I can play and sleep to it.  Depending on our mood. 🙂

They also say Mama might be leaving soon… but I’m a lil worried.  Lil bro Taco and her are like BESTIES.  Taco is always watchin’ out for her… it’s weird because Taco is MY lil bro, but he is HER big bro.  So I totally get where he’s coming from!

Mommy and Daddy took Mama to get fixed the other day, so now she’s gotten all her shots and cleaned up!  Shout out to our other paw of Metro Paws, LOVE AND LICKS FOUNDATION, for sponsoring everything!!

I hope y’all are starting to get in that holiday spirit!  What do Mommy and Daddy say? …oh yeah, it’s THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR!

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