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Dr. Altman
Dr. Altman, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 11105
Experience:  Practicing small animal veterinarian for 17 years.
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Vet just called, my 7 yr old cavalier (very healthy) needs

Customer Question

Vet just called, my 7 yr old cavalier (very healthy) needs six teeth extracted. We are religious about vet appointments, how could this have been missed at regular check ups? Is it a big deal for a cav to loose six teeth? I feel negligent and now concerned about my second cavalier who is four years old. Should both dogs have teeth cleaning annually and why has this not been recommended? Is it a bred specific problem? Thank you
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 1 year ago.

Welcome to Justanswer! I am Dr. Altman and happy to assist you both today!

I am so sorry you Cavalier needs these teeth extracted. Unfortunately this is very common in small breed dogs, especially ones with shorter snouts but there is often no way to know until they are under anesthesia the level of dental disease because we can then x-ray and probe the pocket depths.

I have two Chihuahua's and they are both as your dogs are, even with annual cleanings starting at 2 years old they need extractions because there is often crowding in their mouth but tend to have more progressive dental disease than larger dogs. So yes I would consider a cleaning on your 4 year old dog even if there is no appearance of dental disease. My four year old Chi had large pockets with his first cleaning at 2 years old that luckily we are able to monitor at this point (and he looked absolutely fine when evaluated awake) but my other dog has had multiple extractions and she is only 5 years old!

It is better to remove the diseased and often painful teeth (they really don't give you any indication they are painful but we note it on our exam under anesthesia) to ensure they do live a healthy happy life and often these teeth are smaller less vital teeth to chewing but I firmly believe removing the diseased teeth are key to maintaining their health in the long run. Especially a breed such as a Cavalier that is higher risk for heart disease and having a link to heart and dental disease in dogs and people

I hope this information makes sense, I know this is very difficult to hear in your beloved friend but I am sure your vet is only recommending removing the teeth that are of most concern and it will improve her breath and oral health. Please let me know how else I can assist you both today

If you have more questions or if I can help in any other way, please do not hesitate to ask! If you would like to accept my answer, please press RATE OUR CONVERSATION (I am not compensated in any other way). Bonuses are always welcome. Thanks!

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Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 1 year ago.

Please let me know if I can be of any further assistance to you both today!

If you are satisfied with our chat please rate or accept so I may be compensated for my time. Thank you!

Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 1 year ago.

Good afternoon, I wanted to check in to see how your Cavalier is recovering from oral surgery earlier this week? Was my information helpful to you? I would love an update when you are able...