We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.

905.664.4888

Toothache?

As pet owners, it can be very easy for us to neglect dental care in our cats and dogs. They are animals, after all. Don’t animals all have yucky mouths? But they aren’t just animals, they are our pets, and they receive care, unlike their wild counterparts. When we take on the responsibility of a pet, we commit to doing whatever it takes to relieve them of pain and suffering. Unfortunately, dental disease can be very painful. It may not be as obvious as other ailments and diseases, but that doesn’t make it any less important. We owe it to our pets to protect them from the discomfort and pain that dental disease can cause.

I like to contextualize dental discomfort in our pets by comparing it to a human toothache. Often humans can have dental issues that are truly painful, but not evident to anyone but their highly trained and educated dentist. Imagine how painful a tooth must be if it is visibly rotten. Sometimes we feel uncomfortable after a routine dental cleaning because of the invasive scraping of the probes. We comfort ourselves with a cold smoothie, or mashed potatoes for dinner. But our gums do not look like they are in pain. When we pry open our pet’s mouth, and we see inflamed, red or bleeding gums on teeth covered in tartar, we should imagine what our mouths might feel like if they were in the same shape. Then imagine how they must feel when their diet consists, in large part, of very crunchy kibble. Ouch!

All pet parents are highly encouraged to monitor their pet’s dental health. There are a number of things we can do to help protect our pets from painful dental disease.

Our Enhanced Optimum Care plan includes an annual Dental Prophylaxis. It means that once a year, your pet is placed under general anesthesia and carefully monitored by a Registered Veterinary Technician while we clean and polish their teeth. They wake up with a fresh mouth and are none the wiser. Please note that this Optimum Care procedure does not include dental radiographs or extractions. However, with regular prophylaxis from a young age, we may be able to avoid extractions all together!

Additionally, if oral health care is started early, it can benefit our pets substantially. If we brush the teeth of young animals regularly, they become used to it and don’t mind having their teeth brushed as they get older. It can become part of a family routine. There are several pet-safe kinds of toothpaste available that your dog or cat may come even few as a treat! They are offered in such flavours as beef and seafood! Even the act of brushing with warm water only can go a long way. There also exists a variety of pet toothbrushes, including a model that slips onto the owner’s finger for easier brushing.

In addition to manual cleaning, our pets dental health can be improved by dental diets or treats. Both Royal Canin and Hills make kibble specifically designed to minimize plaque and tartar formation on teeth. The kibble size of these diets is large so that plaque can be scraped off the teeth as the animal crunches on the kibble. As well, these diets include ingredients designed to break down plaque and tartar with each meal. These assets can also be found in some dental treats! For example, Greenie treats can help to clean your pets’ teeth as well as acting as a tasty treat or reward.

If you have any questions about how to help prevent dental disease in your pet, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team by phone or e-mail, we are always happy to help improve the quality of life in all of our furry friends.

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COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

The following changes are effective as of Wednesday, March 18, 2020:

1. We are currently operating a "closed waiting room" policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain in your vehicle and use your cell phone to call us at 905-664-4888. We will bring your pet into the hospital for an examination with the veterinarian. The veterinarian will then call you to discuss our recommended treatment plan. After your appointment, a technician will return your pet to your car and take care of any needed medications and payment.

2. We are continuing to accept appointments for urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations. All other services will be scheduled for a later time. However, if you're unsure whether your pet needs medical attention, please call us to discuss your situation.

3. We are still OPEN with the following hours: Monday to Friday 8 am - 4 pm

4. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 2-4 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the hospital. Our staff will bring your order to your car. You can also use our online store and have your food delivered directly to your home. To sign up for the Online Store, please visit our website.

5. For the time being, we are not accepting cash as payment. Credit cards and debit card payments are still available.

Online consultations are now available! If you wish to connect with a veterinarian via message, phone or video, visit our website and follow the "Online Consultation" link.

Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our jobs. We have taken these measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this disease.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid, and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

- Your dedicated team at Briarwood Animal Hospital