Have you seen ads for those low-cost dental clinics that will clean your pet’s teeth for less? They promise cleaner, healthier teeth for your dog or cat at cheap prices. But beware: most discount dental clinics are less expensive because they don’t use anesthesia!

In fact, they don’t do a lot of things that ensure the health and well-being of your pet. Before you book one of those discount dentals, here’s what you need to know:

  • Both the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) consider cleaning a companion animal’s teeth without general anesthesia unacceptable. 
  • They’re playing on a pet owner’s fear of anesthesia when in fact, the procedure is very safe. While it does have risks, they’re manageable—especially when done by well-trained staff like we have at BFPC.
  • In addition to the stress and potential pain a non-anesthetic dental can cause the pet, there are the very dangerous risks of accidental damage if patients move even slightly, as well as the possibility of unintentional aspiration during the procedure.
  • Discount pet dentals without anesthesia don’t reach plaque under the gum line, where most dental disease forms. If not cleaned, the plaque can cause serious infections to develop, leading to damage to the jawbone and connective tissue.
  • They don’t do x-rays. Again, most serious dental disease happens where you can’t see it, and x-rays are the only way to spot it.
  • Discount pet dentals are not as inexpensive as they seem. The price is for a simple routine cleaning, but often pets need extractions and other more involved treatment. You’ll be paying extra for those services, and the anesthesia that’s required.

As an AAHA-accredited hospital, we can provide safe and exceptional dental care for your pets. Our Fear Free protocols make the procedure less stressful, and our thorough, complete cleanings will save you money in the long term.

For more information about your pet’s dental health, or to schedule your pet for an exam or cleaning, schedule an appointment online or call us at (503) 614-9061.