Hidden Dangers May Be A Mouth Away


For years it was optional for our dog and cat owners to choose whether they wanted dental x-rays for their pets. For the last year, ALL of our dental patients have received dental x-rays. Why you say? Because on a routine physical exam it is impossible to perform a complete dental exam. We now know on the anesthetized dental patient, it is also impossible to perform a complete dental exam without dental x-rays.*  We know this because the dental x-rays have revealed hidden dangers.


Take Fido Doe, a recent dental patient of ours. Fido’s teeth were graded a P1 by the veterinarian. (P0 -P4 is our grade standard with P0 being the best) Once anesthetized, Fido’s teeth were x-rayed. The x-rays revealed root fractures of many teeth. There is no way to determine when this happened or why. But the fact remains these teeth had hidden issues that only dental x-rays could find. There is also no way to know how much pain Fido had been in. Dogs and cats are masters at hiding pain. I call it a survival instinct.

Another case in point is Emmy, my own 12 year old Miniature Schnauzer. She had a routine dental performed in June of last year. Dr. Mark Plott and his team performed dental x-rays. Emmy’s right upper canine tooth was basically dead. She had shown no obvious signs of pain and discomfort at home. When they cleaned the tartar from that tooth, there was a slight discoloration near the gum line. Without the x-rays we would have never known about the advanced nature of her problem and her pain. The recommendation was to remove the tooth. Once she healed from the extraction, she was like a new dog. She was playing often and hard with our new puppy. Even acting like the puppy herself!

Dental cleanings are not cheap for dogs and cats. At least they are not cheap at Foster Animal Hospital compared to other places. (no two vet hospitals practice vet medicine the same) The service received here is not cheap either. There is a high value for what we do before, during and after dental treatments. If nothing more, just the fact that we now routinely find hidden dangers during a routine dental treatment by taking x-rays can save your pet years of oral pain and discomfort. And can ultimately save you money. That’s why having a yearly dental  treatment is the best recommendation we can make.


*Note- all dental procedures require anesthesia. Our patients won’t sit in the chair with their mouths open!!

For more information on what our Dental Treatment includes visit here:

https://www.fosteranimalhospital.com/veterinary-services/pet-dental-care.html, or give us a call today at 704-786-0104.

Links for more information on this important topic:





All the best,

Stephen E Foster, DVM, CCRT

Foster Animal Hospital, P.A.

Foster Animal Clinic at Parkway Commons

Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center

730 Concord Parkway North

Concord, NC 28027