South Waikato veterinary Services



Puppies start teething at around 3-6 months of age. Most puppies and kittens begin to lose their temporary teeth at this age and they will be replaced by permanent adult teeth. Most of the time you will not even know this is happening as often your pet will swallow their teeth! Sometimes your pet may have retained baby teeth. This is especially common in small dogs and your pet should be examined by a veterinarian as often they will require surgical extraction to prevent more serious problems developing. This can be easily done at the same time we desex your pet.

To help prevent dental disease in your pet it is important to have your pets teeth checked by a veterinarian every 12 months to ensure that no cleaning or polishing is required. Some pets, especially cats and small dogs, can develop dental disease when they are still young. Unless you are checking your pets back molars regularly for teeth and gum issues, problems can easily go unnoticed. Studies have shown that up to 70% of pets have dental disease! It is one of the most underrated conditions affecting pets.

Special diets such as dental care biscuits can help to break down plaque and stop tartar accumulation on your pets teeth.

Some cats or dogs will allow you to brush their teeth 2 - 3 times per week. This is the ideal way to help prevent dental disease. If you are interested in learning how to train your pet to accept teeth cleaning please ask to speak to one of our friendly veterinarians or vet nurses for advice. It is important to use a special pet toothpaste as it is non foaming and designed to be swallowed.

For dogs the use of Kong toys or Nylabones can help to prevent tartar accumulation. For animals who will not use chew toys, we occasionally recommend the cautious use of bones. For dogs only large uncooked bones (such as cannon) should be offered as small bones can fragment and cause serious life threatening blockages in the gut. Cats can be offered raw chicken necks to help keep their teeth clean. It is important to throw away bones once the meat has been removed otherwise they can get hard and may fracture your pets teeth. Bones should NEVER be cooked before being given to your pet.

If your pets tooth has gum recession, root exposure (very painful), is fractured or is rotten it will require removal. Depending on the tooth's location your pet may have local anaesthetic nerve blocks performed or dissolvable stitches placed in the gum. No need to worry about your pets ability to eat after extractions either, cats with no teeth at all often eat biscuits with ease!


The South Waikato Veterinary Services team is committed to providing top quality and extensive professional services to the Tokoroa, Putaruru, Whakamaru, Mangakino, Tirohanga and Atiamuri areas.

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Contact us at one of our 3 locations

2 Satco Drive, Tokoroa

75 Tirau St, Putaruru

108 State Highway 30, Whakamaru

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