How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Altman Your Own Question
Dr. Altman
Dr. Altman, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 10910
Experience:  Practicing small animal veterinarian for 17 years.
Type Your Dog Veterinary Question Here...
Dr. Altman is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I have a rescue mutt- 9 years old. She's supposed to be part

Customer Question

I have a rescue mutt- 9 years old. She's supposed to be part french bulldog/part dachshund. She's scared to go to the vet and has never had a "real" exam by a veterinarian secondary to pooping every time one touches her. Anyhow, I've noticed as she has aged that her breath has become much worse, which I assume is normal. However, I looked at her gums and teeth today and the gums seem to be much more red with a few black spots and a few of her teeth are discolored, almost a gray color. How concerned should I be? I know periodontal treatment can be very expensive, especially when you have a dog that will need extra medication to get her through the door.
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 7 months ago.

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

I am sorry to hear your dog has such a fear of veterinarians. With what breeds she has in her and her age I would be concerned she has periodental disease that is going to require anesthesia, a cleaning, a good probability that she will have extractions. Unfortunately dental disease is accumulation of bacteria which forms tartar and has been linked to progressive heart disease and kidney issues as well as gi changes as the tartar breaks off and is metabolized into the system

I would investigate a mobile veterinarian who maybe able to do a more thorough oral exam on her but it may require her to be seen by a veterinarian who can do the sedation/ anesthesia and oral assessment all at once with a cleaning. I have occasionally had patients that fit this scenario and we send home something to reduce anxiety prior to the procedure (such as trazadone) and that relaxes them enough that an iv catheter can be placed and anesthesia can be performed

Unfortunately you are correct that this can be expensive if there is severe dental disease. Depending on the area you live in this can range from $350-1000 (highest in the bigger cities) but you should be able to get a baseline estimate for your area with your regular vet.

I know this is a challenging position to be in, wanting to do the best for her but having her so frightened that it makes the visit quite a challenge. It might be a matter of an oral sedative at home so that she can be evaluated under anesthesia at the same time as her cleaning and move forward based on what is found but I do think with the odor, discoloration (including black color), and her breeds I would begin saving to have further workup done on her mouth...

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 at the top of your screen (I am not compensated in any other way). Bonuses are always welcome. Thanks!

Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 7 months ago.

I am glad to see you were able to view my responses earlier. I hope the information was helpful to you both

Please let me know if I can be of any further assistance to you both today. I am in surgery this morning but will respond as soon as I am able...

If you are satisfied with our chat please rate or accept with the stars on the top of your screen so I may be compensated for my time. If you are having any difficulties you can also state your rating (excellent, good, fair) in our chat as an alternative. Thank you!

Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 7 months ago.
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Dr. Altman

Related Dog Veterinary Questions