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Dental Advice Please


Guest GodsGreytGifts
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Guest GodsGreytGifts

Hi everyone!

I have a 13 year old greyhound who has a dental 'epulis' (a red growth in her mouth as a reaction to her gums being infected from tartar).

I hesitate to subject her to a dental cleaning because of her age. The vet also said he could put her on antrobe (antibiotics) for two weeks to see if that lessens the redness.

Has anyone had any experience like this ?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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YES! I my 12 year old girl, Hope started on antirobe (clindamycin) for one month and will be taking antirobe for the first five days of each month to keep bacterial growth at a minimal for her teeth.

 

I am excited to tell you that her general health improved tremendously! Much happier, bouncier, hungrier and wants chew treats again.

 

Today though possibly from taking antirobe she has developed diarrhea....antibiotics tend to upset the natural balance of depleting the good bacteria needed in the intestinal tract so she will be taking a product called "Fortiflora" which is a type

of probiotic. It is a powder packet to be put in her wet food once daily.

 

 

Edited by Fudge
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Guest GodsGreytGifts

Dear Fudge,

Thank you so much for responding. Your Hope's experience has given me hope for my 13 year old Callie's teeth.

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Guest LynnM

If she's in otherwise good health, there's no reason NOT to give her a full dental. It's always best to premedicate for a week with Clindamycin or similar antibiotic.

 

Lynn

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Guest trevdog

I would see how she does on the meds helping it and then see about getting the dental. It's still posssible it may need to be removed and getting a dental will help with other issues. If she is otherwise healthy I would have it done too.

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Guest ohgreyt

My doxie did pretty well on an antibiotic for a week each month for a few months. Unfortunately we ended up having to pull many teeth. They were just too badly decayed. Hopefully it will lessen the irritation and heal a little. I'd consider the dental though after the irritation has subsided a little.

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Guest GodsGreytGifts

Thank you LynneM, ohgreyt and trevdog for your advice.

For being 13, Callie is in pretty good health but she gets extremely stressed going to the vet and really hates being confined. That's why I hesitate about giving her a full dental cleaning especially under anesthesia. Do senior dogs routinely get their teeth cleaned ?

Edited by GodsGreytGifts
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Out of curiosity, are you doing any regular maintenance towards tooth cleaning?

 

An enzymatic cleaner (Petrodex, etc.) along with a child-sized, soft-bristled tooth brush (not the one the Petrodex comes with- you can use that to scrape the gunk off your grill instead) will dramatically improve the appearance and function of the teeth.

 

Another, more radical approach is to feed raw foods- which may not be an appropriate change of pace without doing quite a bit of reading, particularly given the age of the pup. But it sure does keep the choppers shiny without any need for veterinary intervention!

Coco (Maze Cocodrillo)

Minerva (Kid's Snipper)

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Guest GodsGreytGifts

Dear ahicks51,

Okay, I have to confess... I don't brush her teeth as often as I should. But I do give her Hill's dental food and chewies. Her last full dental cleaning was two years ago.

Thank you for the reminder.

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Ditto with LynnM. If she is in good health there is no reason she can't have her teeth cleaned. Your vet may want to run a pre-op blood panel (which she should have done yearly at her age anyway) and he/she may want to snap a chest rad and/or run an ekg (to check heart function) just to make sure everything is okay before putting her under. Age is not a disease but, you have to run certain precautions. Do start giving ab's prior to her dental day and please have your vet administer IV fluids while she under it will speed her recovery--IMHO:P

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Hearing from the rest of you, now I am concerned as to why my vet did not think it was a good idea to put my Hope under anesthesia for have a dental and tooth pulled.

 

I posted earlier in this thread that she is on pulse antibiotics.

 

The vet I used to see moved pretty far away so I started taking my girls to a nearby vet. I must admit I'm concerned that these vets do not know greys the way their old vet did :unsure

Edited by Fudge
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Guest Tenderhearts

Just a few thoughts here. My bridge angel Lori Ann came to me at 6 years of age with very bad teeth. She didn't have much enamel left, and one lower canine was broken off and the remainder of the tooth was very discolored because it was dead.

 

She was always put on antibiotics before a dental, and we did a dental every year until she was 12. During that dental, she did very poorly under anesthesia, and went into respiratory arrest, so future dentals were out of the question.

 

She also developed an epulis after that last dental, and the vet told me it would involve removing a lot more tissue than you could see, they are highly recurring, and she could no longer tolerate anesthesia. He said as long as it didn't interfere with her eating, which it didn't, she would be fine.

 

I lost her last December, but it was unrelated to the oral issues. She had been experiencing progressive weakness in her hindquarters. She was 13 1/2.

 

 

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Guest LynnM

Every vet is different. The vet I used to work for handled a lot of geriatric dogs of all breeds. I guess you could say she was "geriatric savvy". The vet we use for most adoption dogs and I use for some of my dogs also has no problem cleaning up the mouth of an old dog. If one does have issues with anesthesia and old dogs, that's their prerogative. Who knows... maybe they have a less experienced staff, or their clientele is made up primarily of young sporting dogs, or they have had a bad experience somewhere along the line with elderly dogs and anesthesia.

 

When Joplin gets his teeth done, we use it as an occasion to do bloodwork, but that's all that I do differently with him that I don't necessarily do with my younger dogs (that's not to say that it's not always a wise idea to do pre-op bloodwork). It's also a good opportunity to take biopsies of any suspicious lumps or bumps and send them out, trim nails and do whatever other "maintenance" work needs done.

 

Rotten mouths can really become a quality of life issue for a dog- one where even if the dog *is* a high risk patient (an old, but healthy dog isn't necessarily high risk), the risk is justified.

 

Lastly, once the mouth is painful, the dog can often become defensive about having his head handled. That makes it difficult for you to look in there and see what is really going on back there. An abcess can come up quickly. There are also certain cancerous tumors that can come up in the mouth. The sooner those are spotted and removed, the less likely they are to return. Once the dog's mouth is painful, the ONLY way the vet is going to get a truly good look at what's in there is under anesthesia, and it's not always just cruddy teeth lurking back there. Found that out the hard way.

 

Lynn

Edited by LynnM
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Guest GodsGreytGifts

Oh, Tenderhearts,

Your LoriAnn's dental history sounds a lot like my Callie's. Thank you for sharing her story- my condolences too. No matter what age, it is so hard when they leave us.

 

 

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