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petdrz., Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 7350
Experience:  Over 30 years of experience in caring for dogs and cats.
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Our english cocker has developed a reaction to tartar on her

Customer Question

our english cocker has developed a reaction to tartar on her teeth (CUPS). Our vet is recommending either pulling all the teeth or applying a sealant. Are the sealants effects?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  petdrz. replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thanks for trusting me to help you and your pet today. I am a licensed veterinarian with over 25 years experience and would be happy work with you.

I can understand that she is sensitive to having her teeth brushed as her mouth has likely been very sore for quite awhile. Since contact mucositis (CUPS) is a hypersensitivity reaction to the plaque on her teeth, extraction often becomes the treatment, even of other therapies are initially attempted as it is very difficult to keep all of the plaque off of the teeth.

If any therapy besides extraction is attempted, it has to start with a thorough COHAT (comprehensive oral health assessment and treatment). This includes a detailed examination, probing and charting of each and every tooth along with whole-mouth intra-oral dental radiographs. All teeth with significant periodontal disease (pocketing, bone loss, or root exposure exposure) or endodontic disease should be extracted. Selective extraction in areas of crowding (that would be plaque-retentive) would be prudent as well. The remaining teeth are then cleaned thoroughly above and below the

gum line followed by polishing and fluoride treatment. At this stage, the mouth will probably need about 2 weeks to heal and to allow as much of the inflammation to resolve as possible. Antibiotics and pain meds are usually given in this recovery period, but since the dogs still fairly painful at this time, we would not institute brushing in the first two weeks or so. After that however, without brushing or other such home care, the treatment will not be very effective, regardless of what else is applied to the teeth. Even with rinses, gels, water additives or sealants on the teeth, plaque will still form and plaque is the enemy. The sealants work by smoothing the enamel surface so the plaque can't as easily stick, but they do wear off over time. Granted that these products may slow the progression, but even so, without aggressive home care (brushing) she will eventually form plaque and inflammation again. How quickly is unknown and it may be worth a try before proceeding to extractions, but be prepared that in spite of your best efforts, maybe even if you are able to brush after the cleaning, it may not be enough.

I hope this is helpful. Please let me know if you have ANY other questions. My goal is to give you 100% satisfaction and if you are not yet satisfied, please reply so I can clarify for you.

Dr Z

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