Periodontal disease is the most common disease in dogs and cats. Approximately 80% of all dogs will have some form of periodontal disease by the age 3 years old. The course and cause of periodontal disease in animals is the same as in people. Treatment and prevention is also the same as in people, unfortunately animals cannot do this for themselves. It is the owners’ responsibility to provide appropriate oral home care. This is not always possible to provide, even if the owners are committed, based on the patients demeanor.
Therefore, annual professional periodontal therapy is recommended in conjunction with daily oral home care. The ‘Gold’ standard of care is daily brushing of the teeth. If this cannot be provided, there are an abundance of water additives, rinses, chews and dental specific diets that can be used. Because there are very few industry standards when it comes to pet treats, chews and claims made about efficacy; the Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) was created to evaluate these claims. Please visit their website for an up to date list of approved items.