Pet Teeth Cleaning

Dr. Lilla Yan

Professional Pet dental cleaning and extractions

By Dog Teeth Cleaning, Pet Teeth Cleaning

This article is about professional dental care and will hopefully provide an understanding of what happens when your pet is admitted into the hospital for a dental procedure and most importantly why we do it what we do!




Just like  people, our pets’ teeth ideally should be professionally scaled and polished regularly.  This procedure not only cleans off the obvious brown tartar that you can see but more importantly it cleans underneath the gum line. Scaling underneath the gums reduces painful gingivitis (swollen and painful gums) and helps the diseased gums heal, and reduces worsening of gum recession.

A common question we get is why pets need to be under general anesthesia for dental cleaning.

The answer is fairly simple:  in order to scale and polish all of their teeth at all angles, especially scaling under the gum line, it is simply impossible to do properly with the pet awake. Unlike a person in a dental chair, we cannot reason with the pet as to why they need to keep completely still while we put an instrument in their mouth and perform a procedure for a significant period of time that may be uncomfortable for them. Physical restraint  is not an option.  Even if it was possible,  it would require  be extremely stressful for your pet and it still would be unlikely that each tooth could be properly cleaned and graded and scaling under the gum line could be done properly.       It is also important that they are intubated (a breathing tube attached to an oxygen/anesthethic machine) so they cannot aspirate any fluid into their lungs during the procedure.

Some people have a fear of general anesthesia.   At your pet’s next annual exam (or any time your pet is in), we encourage you to talk to the veterinarian and/or technicians about precautions and safety procedures we have in place as well as specific concerns you may have about your pet.  It is important to remember that the risk for anesthesia for young healthy pets is very low



It is a common concern that a pet will need many teeth extracted.

I will never forget an older gentleman that brought in his dog for an exam.  After I examined his dog I discussed with him that some of the teeth were very infected and needed to be extracted. I was well aware that a lot of people don’t like the thought of their pet’s teeth being removed. To my surprise, the gentleman said to me, “Doc, do what you need to do. I had all of my teeth taken out two years ago, and I only wish that I had done that years earlier! They were causing me so much pain.”

As much as we would like to always see teeth that only require cleaning, many times we do come across ones that are beyond salvageable. When a tooth is infected and painful, the best option for the pet is to have it removed.

Full mouth dental radiographs  provide us with important information about the health of each tooth and help us make informed decisions about extractions and other oral surgery needed.

Dr. Annelle Valentin views dental radiographs

Will your pet still be able to eat with some of their teeth gone?  The answer is, absolutely. In the wild, their ancestors needed their teeth to tear away meat. In captivity with our kibble and canned food pets really do not even need ANY of their teeth to be able to eat their food.


I hope this has answered some of your questions and busted some common myths about our pets’ oral health. If you have any further questions, please feel free to give us a call!

Dr. Lilla Yan

Dr. Lilla Yan

Pet Dental Care Do’s and Don’ts

By Dog Teeth Cleaning, Pet Dentist, Pet Teeth Cleaning

Quick Do’s and Don’ts about caring for your Pet’s teeth:


By Dr. Lilla Yan


DO brush your pets teeth every day. Studies have shown that brushing less than every 48 hours is much less effective.

Dental Health

DO use a pet toothpaste. Pets don’t know how to spit out the toothpaste, and ingesting human toothpaste can cause upset stomach. Pet toothpaste is also usually flavoured with chicken, beef, or fish flavours.


DO use a soft-bristle toothbrush. Human toothbrushes are fine.


DO make it a fun experience for your pet. Start by putting a small amount of toothpaste on your finger, and rub that on their gums. After they get used to this daily ‘treat’, switch to toothbrush and start brushing their teeth.

CET samples

DO feed a dental diet where appropriate. We recommend Prescription Diet T/D for dogs and cats.

T/D dental diet

T/D dental diet

How T/D works

How T/D works

DO check your pets mouth regularly. Check their mouth every day when you brush their teeth. Your pet’s mouth should also be examined be a veterinarian at least once a year.

2012-04-15 20.49.44

DO ask one of our team members before giving your pet a new dental product. There are a growing number of dental products on the market, eg. chews, oral rinses, water additives and gels.Some are beneficial while others simply do not do much.

View our own toothbrushing video for tips…

DONT feed chews that are too hard, eg. beef/pork bones, antlers. We have seen numerous tooth fractures in dogs that have chewed on these products, and broken teeth needs to be either extracted or have root canal therapy done.


DONT worry about brushing the inside of the teeth (the tongue side). But you should brush all around the mouth and all the way to the back teeth.


DONT brush your pets teeth if their gums are red and irritated. If your pet has signs of gingivitis, you should talk to your veterinarian before you start to brush their teeth. It could be painful to have their gums brushed.

Dr. Lilla Yan

cat chewing toothbrush

Guidelines and Conditions for the Dental Health Month Essay Contest

By Dog Teeth Cleaning, Pet Teeth Cleaning, Toronto Cats, Toronto Dogs, Uncategorized, Veterinary Exams

Royal York Animal Hospital Dental Health ESSAY contest February 2015

GRAND PRIZE:  $500 off your Pet’s dental surgery! 


ALL qualified entries will receive 5% off all Dental Surgery, procedures and Products for the month of February 2015.


SUBMIT A 500 WORD ESSAY by EMAIL answering the following questions:




Guidelines, Conditions and Rules:

  •  Essays must be submitted by EMAIL to  by January 31, 2015
  • Essays should be approximately 500 words 
  • Include a photo of your pet
  • Essays will be evaluated for CONTENT (and to make sure they answer the question)  and then entered into a DRAW
  • Disqualification may occur if the question is not answered in good faith
  • The Draw will take place on February 1 and the winner will be contacted by Telephone or email
  • The winning pet must be deemed healthy (by RYAH veterinarians) and up to date on any and all routine health procedures including recommended vaccinations
  • All pets must be examined and deemed healthy, by one of RYAH’s veterinarians, prior to dental surgery being scheduled.
  • All pre-operative recommended diagnostics need to be complete before dental surgery
  • Some pets may not qualify due to previous medical conditions
  • Prize money only applies to Dental procedures and cannot be exchanged for other veterinary services
  • Prize money does not apply to pre-operative diagnostics
  • Permission must be given to use your story (pet name only) and photo on Social media and marketing material
  • The prize must be claimed by March 31, 2015
  • ALL entries will receive 5% off Dental Surgery and products for the month of February 2015

(Disclaimer: This contest is not intended to solicit new clients)

    ENTER TODAY:    

Dental Health Month

Make an Appointment

Please click on the "Make an appointment" icon on the home page of our Website and follow the directions -- it is EASY!
  • Date Format: MM slash DD slash YYYY
  • :