This is Percy, he is a 5 year-old, beautiful, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. His owner brought him in recently for a health check as part of our PHC (Pet Health Club) discount scheme. During this check the vet discussed having Percy in for the day to give his teeth a good clean. Percy, like many small dogs, isn’t too keen on having his teeth brushed and it can be very tricky to do a thorough job on a reluctant pet! This morning Percy was brought in by his owner having been starved overnight. His owner has gone through the consent form and given us a contact number so we can call and let them know how Percy is getting on later. It is important for us to be able to contact you when you leave your pet with us, just in case of emergencies. We are more than happy for you to leave us multiple numbers if you are busy at work or out and about. Here Percy has settled into his kennel and had a cuddle with Alison, one of the nurses who will be caring for Percy today. We have a range of kennel sizes to suit the wide variety of breeds we see each day. We also have an isolation ward for accommodating patients that need to be cared for away from other patients.
We have a dedicated dental suite at the hospital and the equipment we use is very similar to what you would find in human dentists. We use an ultrasonic descaler to remove tartar from the teeth and an air-drill when necessary on dental extractions. After descaling, the teeth are polished and the mouth carefully rinsed. Sometimes, following extractions, it may be necessary to suture the gum.
Percy will shortly be given another thorough health check by a vet prior to administration of a premed. The premed helps to provide pre-emptive pain-relief and sedation to patients before they undergo general anaesthesia. The premed also allows the patient to have a smooth recovery post-operatively. Percy is being a model patient and has already made friends with several nurses.
Here Percy is just about to be anaesthetised; he has an intravenous catheter placed in this right foreleg. This will be used to administer the general anaesthetic agent and then intravenous fluids to support his circulatory system throughout his dental procedure. Not all practices administer intravenous fluids to patients undergoing routine procedures. At Orwell vets we are proud to provide the best levels of care to your pets while they are under our care, whether it is for routine surgery or during emergencies; this includes administration of intravenous fluid support to patients undergoing general anaesthesia lasting more than 15 minutes.
This picture shows how Percy has tartar build-up around his upper incisors, it is quite unusual for there to be this amount on the top and nothing on the bottom. Smaller dogs like Percy are prone to dental disease as they have limited space in their small jaws for all of their teeth, food and debris can start to build up and eventually the teeth become decayed.
Percy will have some teeth carefully extracted today - we have all the very latest equipment and training required to extract teeth
Percy is having his teeth descaled and polished using an ultrasonic piezoelectric descaler and a low speed air driven polishing hand piece.
Percy is recovering well from his anaesthetic and is being cared-for in our intensive care ward. A dedicated nurse will observe his recovery and monitor his vital signs until he is fully awake. It is important for him to be kept warm during this recovery as smaller dogs are more prone to heat loss during anaesthesia.
Percy is soon awake and ready to be transferred back to the dog ward, where a kennel nurse will continue to care for him until he is ready to be discharged later. Percy’s owner will be advised on how to administer his post-operative medications and feed a soft diet for a few days while his gums are healing. Offering an easily digestible food post-anaesthesia is advised and owners are welcome to take a supply of this home to feed for a few days, this can help to reduce the chances of upset tummies after surgery. Following dental work, we often advise on the various methods for you to try at home in order to keep your pets freshly-cleaned teeth sparkling for as long as possible. This may include special dental chews impregnated with enzymatic toothpaste, brushing and specially formulated dental diets that help reduce plaque build-up. The nurse will discuss this at discharge and again later at a post-dental check-up 1 month later. Percy was very well-behaved patient and made a speedy recovery from his dental work. We would like to thank his owner for allowing us to photograph him and write this feature about him.