Veterinary Tooth Fairies

Best Friends Animal Society, the largest no-kill animal shelter in the country, is one of the shelters where we donate time to provide veterinary dental care to animals who are in need of adoption and important dental care. Last year our staff traveled to the sanctuary in Utah where we completed 66 dental procedures including: 32 dogs, 32 cats, one potbellied pig and one rabbit. With a proper veterinary dental evaluation, cleaning and in some cases treatment, these pets are far more likely to be adopted and find forever homes. Watch the video below or read more about Best Friends and our visit to the shelter!

Princess - Broken Jaw Repair

This is Princess. Isn't she cute? Though she looks like a puppy, she is about 1.5 years old. She was surrendered to the San Diego Department of Animal Services (SDDAS) along with her sister because they kept getting in fights and their owner couldn't care for them. They may have been more likely to fight because neither pet was spayed... Decreasing aggressive behavior is just another reason to spay and neuter our pets!

Princess had obviously lost the most recent fight. She had multiple lacerations all over her body and on her intake exam, it was noted that she was missing a lower canine tooth. Since this is a very large tooth, the vets at DAS feared the worst and brought her to us at Veterinary Dental Specialties for further evaluation.

Read more: Princess - Broken Jaw Repair

Reggie the Bobcat

Reggie is a 19 year old male Bobcat who was rescued and is cared for by our friends at Fund for Animals Wildlife Center. Reggie came to us for evaluation of a recurrent left facial swelling with abscess formation that had persisted for about two years. In the past the swelling having responded to antibiotic administration, however it became clear that Reggie needed a more thorough evaluation.

Reggie was anesthetized and an oral exam and veterinary dental radiographs revealed that three of his canine teeth had exposed pulp secondary to dental attrition (wear). Pulp exposure allows bacteria from the mouth to infect the endodontic system of these teeth. Once the pulp is infected and it becomes necrotic there is no way for the body's immune system to cleanup this area, which leads to the constant release of bacteria from the apex (bottom) of the root. Over time, this continued release of bacteria leads to abscess formation and was most likely the cause of Reggie's recurrent facial swelling and abscess.

Read more: Reggie the Bobcat

Alexa & Bali - Periodontal Disease

Alexa and Bali are a bonded pair of very sweet chihuahuas at San Diego Department of Animal Services.

They came to us suffering from severe periodontal disease, which without proper treatment leaves them not only at risk for further health problems, but also makes it far less likely they will be adopted.

Dr. Romig and our team were on the case, and anxious to give these two the care they needed along with a better chance at finding a forever home.  

Read more: Alexa & Bali - Periodontal Disease

Beauty - Feline Cleft Palate Surgery

UPDATE: Beauty found a forever home! Read more here.

Beauty, a four year old cat was transferred to San Diego Humane Society from another shelter with just one flaw. She had a cleft palate, which is an oral defect causing an opening in the roof of the mouth. If left untreated, animals with this defect remain at risk for developing aspiration pneumonia, which can be fatal. This condition also put Beauty at risk of not being able to find a family to adopt her.

Read more: Beauty - Feline Cleft Palate Surgery

You Can Help

Pet's Tooth Fairy Fund helps fund care for shelter pets in need of dental care and oral surgery, or who's families have exhausted financial resources and are unable to afford care. 

Learn more.

  • Shelter Dentistry

    Our goal at Veterinary Dental Specialties & Oral Surgery in working with numerous Shelters and Humane Societies is to make shelter pets happier and healthier as well as more adoptable.

    Dental and oral disease is by far the most common medical problem in dogs and cats. Dental disease is not only painful, it is also a source of both local and systemic infection, meaning proper therapy has a significant positive affect on the quality of life. In addition, proper dental care for animals requires anesthesia and is often extensive which is why the associated costs are generally expensive. It is unrealistic for most potential adopters to take on a large health care investment when adopting a new pet. This makes shelter animals with dental disease significantly less adoptable, which means that these pets tend to have long shelter stays and/or require placement with rescue groups instead of an adoptive family. 

    Another complicating factor is that the majority of veterinarians and technicians have minimal training in veterinary dentistry, which limits the number of procedures per day, backing up the rate of adoptions. We practice only dentistry and as such are more time efficient, have fewer complications, and utilize less invasive surgical techniques.

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