Pet Dental Disease Affects the Health of Your Elderly Pet

Jan 13, 2023 | Health

Your pet will experience numerous health changes as they age. Moreover, they are more likely to experience pet dental disease, which may have a systemic impact. Here are a few ways that oral bacteria, periodontal issues, and dental disease impact the general health of your elderly pet.

#1: Your elderly pet can have trouble eating.

Elderly pets frequently have lower appetites as a result of coexisting illnesses that make eating challenging or unpleasant. Your older pet may become lethargic due to nausea brought on by chronic renal failure or painkillers, digestive disturbance brought on by IBD or intestinal lymphoma, worry brought on by cognitive deterioration, or both.

#2: Your elderly pet can refuse to take their medication.

Your elderly pet’s mouth may be in excruciating agony due to gingivitis, tooth-root abscesses, loose teeth, shattered teeth, and a weak jawbone brought on by canine dental disease. Giving your pet oral medication can be challenging if they refuse to eat because they have a sore mouth. When your pet is in pain, it might be difficult to hold their snout and open their mouth wide enough to safely administer oral medication to them, whether using a syringe or by “pilling” them. Your senior pet’s health could suffer as their chronic condition worsens if they aren’t taking their daily prescription.

#3: Your senior pet’s organs can become diseased

When a pet develops dental disease, the significant bacterial load within the mouth can enter the bloodstream and travel throughout the body. The organs most affected by oral bacteria are the heart, kidneys, and liver. The bacteria found in the mouths of pets with dental disease are the same bacteria associated with endocarditis and valvular disease. In fact, the presence of dental disease has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease in dogs. Additionally, the liver and kidneys can become inflamed and infected by filtering blood filled with traveling oral bacteria, which can cause fever, lack of appetite, and weight loss.