Why is pet dental health so important?

Pet dental care is a crucial part of pet care that is often overlooked. Let’s explore why and how ExtrasJar can help your pet’s pearly whites.

Think about how it feels when you forget to brush your teeth just once in the morning or evening. Furry, right? Now, imagine what would happen if there were weeks or months in between cleans! Your dentist wouldn’t be too keen to open your gob. Plus, you’d be putting your mouth and gums in some pretty unideal conditions.

It’s the same with your beloved companion. As a responsible pet owner, you assume the role of doggy or kitty dentist to ensure their pearly whites are clean, functional and pain-free. Luckily, a simple dental routine is just as suitable for them as it is for us.

Together, let’s dive into the importance of pet dental health a little deeper and discover how ExtrasJar can help dog and cat owners secure the wellbeing of their furry best mates easier and cheaper. 

Signs of poor dental health in your pet

As the common language barrier between human and animal goes unsolved, it’s up to us to actively search for signs of dental discomfort in our companions. This may mean getting slobbery for a full pearly white view or call for a vet-aided look. Regardless,  veterinarians worldwide say it’s not happening enough, with the hard truth being that over 70% of cats and 80% of dogs over 3 years of age have some kind of dental disease.

Looking beyond the unpleasant odours thrust upon pet parents, dental disease can cause anything from mild discomfort to excruciating pain in your companion. Bacteria has the potential to build up over time and, if left untreated, spread throughout the body in open-gum-wound highways to cause possibly fatal conditions such as endocarditis and congestive heart failure.

Five common signs of poor dental health include:

  1. Bad breath
  2. Bleeding gums
  3. Yellow or brown teeth colouration
  4. Visible chewing discomfort
  5. Tooth loss

The main cause of dental drama is a lack of cleaning. It can also be caused by age, diet or head injury.

Three ways to responsibly care for your pet’s teeth

1. Regular teeth brushing


For the same reason you and I get the toothbrush out day in and day out, brushing your pet’s teeth regularly at home can prevent plaque from mineralizing into tartar. It may be difficult to get older pets on the brushing train but, like all training, can be made a lot easier by rewards. Luckily, specific pet toothpastes come in yummy flavours such as peanut butter, tuna juice and broth to make the process somewhat of a reward in itself – what a selection!

If safe, rub a pet toothbrush or your finger around the teeth and gums of your pet. The side of the teeth that press against the cheek should be prioritised due to a tendency for plaque buildup. Vets say that your pet’s teeth should be brushed as much as yours!

2. Dental diets, chews and toys   


Dental diets, chews and toys are either designed or formulated to reduce plaque buildup within the mouth of your furry companion. While they aren’t a surefire preventative measure, they’re an efficient and easy way to stay dentally proactive as an owner.

Dental diets commonly feature a reduction in protein and calcium to limit the mineralisation of plaque and tartar. Increased zinc can also slow down the build-up of bacteria and act as an antiseptic on gum wounds and infected teeth. Dental chews can be formulated similarly but, alongside dental toys, focus on a slightly abrasive texture and chewiness that strengthens gums.

3. Vet dentist check-ups


Dental check-ups for your pet are crucial to their overall health. Within this clinical setting, a vet will be able to conduct a complete dental examination and deep clean with the aid of anaesthesia if need be. They are also able to call in an x-ray and offer invaluable advice regarding further treatment. However, they don’t run cheap.

A routine checkup and clean can cost anything between $300 to $700, and that’s not even inclusive of any extra costs of special treatment. Depending on the severity of your pet’s dental situation, specific non-surgery treatment and recovery may add on hundreds more. It’s a must that can catch you by surprise, with many traditional pet cover options opting to disclude pet dentistry and dental treatments from their plans. 

That didn’t sit well with us. That’s why we created ExtrasJar to buck the trend and give your    pets and their teeth the support they deserve.

How can an ExtrasJar account help with pet dental?

With ExtrasJar’s pet extras, you’ll connect with flexible and effective cover that allows you to use your funds the way that you want, in the way that your pet truly needs. If that means using it exclusively on dental treatments and check-ups – we’re ready to make it happen. Plus, you can invest in your pet’s health at whatever premise you choose! Say goodbye to restrictive limits, tiers or the need to fork out for things they don’t need. 

Our tailored cover begins from the moment you open an ExtrasJar account and receive a digital Pet Extras Card. When a dental emergency or check-up swings around, just tap that at the point-of-sale instead of dipping into your savings. If you don’t tap into your fund in a given year or fully exhaust its value, it’ll not only rollover, but likely expand thanks to our pioneering investment mechanism. 

We’re all about freedom, personalisation and funds that don’t expire – here to see your pet receive the highest quality care whatever that may be.

Photo credits: Alvan Nee on Unsplash


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