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Discussion Starter #1
So I'm kind of a new dog owner. I've had one for 3 years and one for 2, but these are my first dogs ever. I've been taking them in for annual exams and they're totally up to date on shots. I recently had a full blood panel done and was basically horrified when I got the bill. Their teeth look good and I clean them, however they haven't had a professional cleaning. What seems reasonable for having a full blood panel and professional teeth cleaning. I do want to put the dogs health first, but these two things are pretty pricey. I was thinking maybe every couple of years'ish? Let me know if you feel strongly about doing it yearly. I'll do it if it's really important.
 

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Cleaning a dogs teeth is actually a more expensive process then cleaning a humans. First, it takes more time, and also a general atheistic is required, since no dog would ever co-operate to have that done. In general blood work costs about the same for dogs as it does for us, difference, is most of us have medical insurance, and many, if not most dogs do not. I do carry medical insurance for ours, and believe me it helps a lot. It is especially helpful, if anything out of the ordinary occurs, injury, or sickness. Ours developed an auto-immune dis-order about a year and a half ago. We had to take her to a specialist, a neurologist. I won't even go into what all that cost, but it was a lot. Fortunately insurance paid most of it, and even more fortunately, she is in remission, now. Vet costs and treatments, vary a lot from one region to another. We happen to live in an area, that is especially expensive.
 

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What kind of dogs do you have? Small dogs have a lot more problems with their teeth than big dogs and even then it depends on the breed. I have had some big dogs that never did need a teeth cleaning and some small dogs that had to have most of their teeth pulled even though they had had them cleaned at the Vets previously. Around here it is usually around $100.00 to do their teeth.
 

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Teeth/allergies

@Naomi: there are liquid supplements that also help. I have an Arm and Hammer one. There are others that you smear on the teeth. They do keep the teeth cleaner. You follow the directions and add it in the water, spray it, apply it. I tried to find the ones with the least amount of ingredients in them. I would be aware to watch for any scratching. My dog had allergies and was allergic, so I made a paste out of bentonite clay and used that on a toothbrush. I had gotten his teeth cleaned at the vet. I decided not to do that anymore due to a) cost, in my area $$$$. b) because I thought it was not great to put him under anesthesia. He developed allergies because he was over medicated. Each time I went to the vet he was prescribed medicine. He was over vaccinated also. His teeth were fine with the brushing I did several times a week. Good luck.
 

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I can tell you that brushing their teeth really does help a lot. When ours was three years old, we had to have her teeth professionally cleaned. The anesthetic was really hard for her to shake. Since then, I brush her teeth daily, using a toothpaste that contains enzymes to help dissolve plaque. She is going to be eleven in January, and her teeth are pristine and very clean. Our Vet when he checks her, comments on how nice and clean her teeth are, and that they need no intervention.
 

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Preventative measures can help save your wallet and your dog's teeth

I heard that good dental health directly relates to overall health and that a small dog that has regular dental care can live up to 5 years longer. A large dog up to a year longer.

Yearly cleanings are recommended for dogs once they are 2 or 3 years old. But, I think if you regularly brush your dog's teeth you can lengthen the time between cleanings if your dog has nice clean teeth. There are also additives to put in their water bowl to help their teeth. There are chews, and sprays and even dog foods that are made to help keep teeth healthy.

Wet dog food is bad for your dog's teeth. It's slimy and it sticks to the teeth.

Most pet insurance carriers don't cover dental, so if you get pet insurance check for the coverage that you want. They also don't cover anything they consider pre-existing.

Dental procedures can get in the thousands so keep that in mind and try to keep up on good preventative care so that you don't have those huge bills later on.

Small dogs have the same teeth, but in a much smaller mouth and all the teeth are touching so dental care is something to really keep up on.

I don't know where you live, but you may have a clinic around that does cleanings for a better price. Where I am, we have a spay/neuter clinic that also offers dental cleanings and I've heard that the prices are far less there than other places.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks - I'll check on that. I've been getting them shots at the humane society and that's almost a third of the cost of the regular vet.
 

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I use the Fresh Breath water addictive that takes the place of brushing. You can get it at Petsmart and Chewy. I also give each dog a bully stick daily to keep their teeth clean. Seems to work.
 
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