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Date:   04 September, 2010  
Focus: Small animals - dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs & rabbits
Case written: May 5, 2009
Dr Sing Kong Yuen, BVMS (Glasgow), MRCVS
ate:  04 September, 2010 
Be Kind To Pets
Veterinary Education
Project 2010-0129
10 years ago, the owners just live with the foul bad breath and let the dog's teeth decay and drop off over time. Painful mouth and tumours were not much the concern of these owners.

In 2010, more dog owners are aware of the need of good dental health as they research the internet. Dental scaling and check ups are important for your dog. As regards anaesthetic risks of dying, many owners need to decide whether they wish to have proper dental work done on their dogs by the veterinarians or by certain pet shop operators. Below are some of my interesting dental cases to share with other vets and to educate dog lovers.
1998. First picture of an oro-nasal fistula in a dog taken by Dr Sing. One of my first attempt at digital photography to start "Be Kind To Pets" community education for surfers 2003. "Doctor, put this old dog to sleep because he bites my only son!" The Old Spitz bites in self defence 2005. Bad breath in older dogs and pictures of teeth scaling. Pictures of a case
2007. The young man knew why his 8-year-old Whippet felt pain in his cheek and could not eat. Taking mum's dog to the vet 2007. Pom's facial wound never heals. Why? Oro-nasal fistula.  
2008.  Epileptic fits in an old Miniature Bull Terrier is attributed to dental diseases
Is chronic periodontal disease a primary cause of epilepsy in this Miniature Bull Terrier? 
Epilepsy --- Clusters of seizures. Miniature Bull Terrier, Male, 7 years. Toa Payoh Vets Miniature Bull Terrier.Male, 7 years. Epilepsy. Toa Payoh Vets Bull Terrier, male, 7 years. Seizures over 20-60 seconds. Toa Payoh Vets
Cluster of seizures continued. Blood test with a high white cell count indicated a bacterial infection.   Dog had much less painful mouth.  4 canine teeth & 1 molar teeth remained. 20 loose teeth extracted. 
I saw him on May 5, 2009. He had not taken anti-epilepsy medication for over the past 3 months and had no fits after a 2nd dental extraction to remove the remaining 4 canine and 1 molar teeth which were slightly loose and not extracted during the first dental treatment.

In this case, the cause of fits could be attributed to oral pain and infection as the dog did not have any fits for the next few months. He went jogging with his master daily. One day, he swallowed his lease and had an injection to vomit the leash. No more complaints of fits in 2009 after all his teeth were extracted. He continued jogging with his master till he passed away of other causes in 2010. Details are at: When your beloved jogging companion suffers from epilepsy.
2008.  Anaesthetic risks in old dogs having dental scaling
Had anaesthetic emergency during spay. Now dental scaling. Be careful. Toa Payoh Vets The lady owner agonised over whether to get dental work done by the veterinarian and risk losing her dog to anaesthetic death as the dog was 9 years old. Dog was OK.

Dogs over 5 years old. There is always the risk of death from anaesthesia. Therefore, some owners do not want any dental work on their old dogs, preferring loose teeth, smelly mouth, infected gums and mouth ulcers and tumours.
  Each owner has to decide whether to take the anaesthetic risks to get the dog dental treatment so that he or she has a better quality of life and not carry bacterial infections which ultimately affect the heart valves and other internal organs.  dental health care scaling pain in dogs singapore toa payoh vets
Try to get dental scaling done when your dog is less than 5 years old and brush his teeth after scaling at least 3x/week. 3 loose decayed teeth extracted in this well loved 9-year-old Lhasa Apso.

She still has many good strong teeth. The concerned young lady  will use tooth-brushing to prevent tartar formation. Tartar formation will recur if the owner does not brush the dog's teeth after scaling and dental work. I don't perform "manual scaling" without general anaesthesia. Ultrasonic dental scaling is preferred as the dog is not stressed or frightened and it does a better job . General anaesthesia is used in all cases. There has only been one exception to this practice as the dog had heart diseases and was very old. The case study is at:           
2009.  A 6-year-old Pomeranian with heart has dental work
dental health care scaling pain in dogs singapore toa payoh vets dental health care scaling pain in dogs singapore toa payoh vets  
  dental health care scaling pain in dogs singapore toa payoh vets dental health care scaling pain in dogs singapore toa payoh vets
3-year-old dog has dental scaling
teeth scaling in 3 year old dog tartar. toapayohvets  singaporeAn annual dental health check up is recommended for dogs older than 2 years old. Use a finger brush to clean your dog's teeth after scaling if your dog fights you when you use the toothbrush.

Start from a young age. You may need to bribe the dog with a "toothpaste" he likes rather than the commercial ones he dislikes. See a case in Jun 2010 at:
The Bichon Frise had an exposed root of the 3rd pre-molar tooth 


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Be Kind To Pets
Veterinary Education
Project 2010-0129
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