Preventing Dental Disease with Pet Dental Care

Your pet’s dental health is a huge contributor to their overall wellbeing. According to the American Veterinary Dental Society, 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have some stage of periodontal disease by the time they are three years old. At our animal hospital, our emphasis on pet dental care aims to change that for the pets of Roanoke, Salem, and the surrounding communities. Our veterinarians and LVTs perform comprehensive dental care to reverse the effects of dental disease.


What is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal (dental) disease is an infection of your pet’s teeth and gums due to excessive tartar buildup. Every time your pet eats, some amount of the food particles remain on the teeth as plaque which contains bacteria. Once that plaque hardens, it becomes tartar and causes discoloration on the teeth. The bacteria begin to have a field day, and without any preventive measures to break down tartar, the bacteria will soon cause infection below the gumline. With no treatment, the bacteria could even pass into your pet’s bloodstream and damage internal organs.

We’re determined to never let periodontal disease advance that far!


Everyone here is so sweet and kind! They love your pets like they are their own and actually listen to you!! They always give my babies great care!! Thanks guys for being so great!!

- Kristin P.

Dr. Todd is awesome. Whether it's holistic care, dietary changes, or simply his ability to CONNECT with both the patient and the owner, we have been 100% satisfied with the level of care provided.

- Patrick K

My wife and I have taken our pets to Hanging Rock AH for nearly 13 years . Without a doubt , the entire staff is extreme friendly, compassionate, and caring. After your first visit , you are greeted by name (which is great ) and everyone genuinely appreciates your business but most importantly, shows compassion and care for your pet(s) that unparalleled. We feel like we are family

- Scott V

Wonderful pet care and kind staff!

- David B

My family has taken all our pets there, in Emergency situations too. The staff is so kind, and the competent. I am so happy they have always been the best


- Charlene G

I have been taking my pups to Hanging Rock for years and have never been anything but confident in the care they received. From my senior pup, that I have since lost; to my newest addition. Dr. Todd and Dr. Honeycutt are the best!


- Delores J


Preventive Pet Dental Care

The good news is that periodontal disease can be entirely prevented! All it takes is regular cleaning of your pet’s teeth, which falls to both you and us. Our comprehensive procedures both prevent dental disease and can reverse its effects. Dental services at our animal hospital include:

  • Thorough oral examination
  • Digital dental X-rays (to assess for disease below the gumline)
  • Ultrasonic scaling (teeth cleaning)
  • Polishing (to smooth teeth and prevent buildup of plaque)
  • Extractions (for diseased or broken teeth)
  • Oral surgery (for severe cases)

Ideally, your pet should have a dental evaluation every year, accompanied by a professional cleaning. Cleanings not only help remove any built-up tartar, but the polishing treatment smooths out teeth to make it hard for plaque to build up in the first place.

Safety During Every Procedure

Of course, to do all these advanced dental treatments, it is necessary to use anesthesia. While there are risks associated with anesthesia, we do everything we can to ensure the highest standard of safety for your pet. Every pet will receive a pre-anesthetic exam and bloodwork. This helps us evaluate any changes in their condition that could interfere with anesthesia. Then, we use an exact anesthetic protocol for your pet and monitor them closely from start to finish.


Preventive Care at Home

Pet dental care depends on you, too. It is best if you are able to brush your pet’s teeth every day, although we realize this can be difficult or even impossible with busy schedules and uncooperative pets. Luckily, plenty of products exist that help to clean your pet’s teeth, including prescription dental diets, water additives, dental chews and more.

Schedule your dental appointment today and take advantage of our preventive pet dental care. You can also ask us about what products we recommend for you and your pet.


Hanging Rock Animal Hospital