FAQ

Why Should I Clean My Pet’s Teeth?

Just like humans, dogs and cats build plaque and calculus (tartar) on their teeth. These substances if not routinely removed are  the cause of gingivitis, bad breath, tooth loss and often eating difficulties. Plaque & calculus harbor bacteria that has been linked to contributing to the progression of other diseases such as heart, liver and kidney disease.


How Can I Tell If My Pet’s Teeth Need Cleaning?

Look for a yellow or brown build-up on the tooth surface and areas of inflammation along the gum line. Bad breath is often the first indicator of a dental problem. If you are unsure, we can check them for you. Just email us a photo of your pet’s teeth for a No Charge consultation.

How Often Should I Clean My Pet’s Teeth?

The average pet over two years old should be having a regular scheduled dental cleaning every 3 – 6 months. This especially needed for small breeds. The frequency of dental cleanings depends on breed, diet, age, health and how often home care is given. Its always recommended that home care happen daily. 

How Do You Hold The Pet Still?

Your pet is positioned comfortably while the technician uses our gentle relaxation techniques. This permits  the pet to feel safe & comfortable. We rely on our pet whispering skills to establish a trusting relationship with each pet. Even feisty pets with challenging personalities are usually very cooperative. Many even fall asleep.  The quiet calmness of the procedure is especially beneficial to senior and nervous pets.

Does It Hurt The Pet?

Absolutely not. We use the same gentle approach as a pediatric dental office uses with children. This is a voluntary procedure. It depends on the pet being at ease.

How Does The Houndstooth Procedure Compare To Anesthetic-Based Cleaning?

Anesthetic-based or Oral Surgery protocols are not  for routine dental cleaning. The precleaning of a damaged area is always part of any major surgery protocol and oral surgery is no different. Your vet cleans the area of mouth first in preparation for removal the infected and diseased teeth.

Dental hygiene is health and wellness-based.  We care for your pet’s oral health before disease is present and after oral surgery has removed any diseased teeth.  

Do You Polish?

Yes. Polishing removes any residual stains & micro deposits. Polishing reduces the return of plaque for approximately 4-6 hours. We adhere to the American Dental Hygienists protocol of Selective Coronal Polishing.

What Equipment Do You Use?

We use an array of professional dental instruments specifically designed for each pet’s individual needs.

Who Is Eligible For Non-Surgical Procedures?

Eligible patients include:

Young pets needing their 1st dental prophylaxis.
Senior pets.
Pets with healthy gingiva & mild to heavy calculus.
Pets with stages 0-3 periodontal involvement.
Pets with medical conditions that makes them not suitable for oral surgery.  We offer our Quality of Life Care. QOL

Is Every Pet A Candidate?

Unfortunately, some pets are not candidates for this procedure. However, we have an extremely high success rate, even among pets assumed to be ineligible.

Pets with dangerously aggressive personalities & some forms of dementia are not eligible.

Pets with advanced periodontal disease needs the disease removed with oral surgery and x-rays.


Pets who have severe dental complications but cannot undergo anesthesia due to age or health conditions may be eligible for our Quality of Life Care following a Dr.’s recommendations. By reducing the bacterial load on the pet’s system, we are usually able to offer these pets significant improvement.