We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.

What Happens After I Drop off my Dog for Dental Surgery

You’ve dropped them off fasted the morning of the surgery and passed over your fur-baby to the staff at the hospital- so now what happens.

We bring “Fluffy” into the treatment room where he has a physical examination including taking his temperature and listening to their heart and lungs (asculted) to make sure there are no abnormalities that might increase their risk to undergo general anesthesia. The next step is to draw some blood (venipuncture), and his blood is analyzed for its chemical and cellular constituents. The kidneys, liver and lungs primarily process the medications and drugs used for general anesthesia and pain control. The blood tests provide the veterinarian indicators of your pets organ health so it can be determined if they are fit to withstand the general anesthesia.

A word about general anesthesia. It is a requirement for proper dental cleaning (dental prophylaxis) and possible extractions. The majority of dental disease happens UNDER the gum line. There is no way that a pet will sit still and hold their mouth open for cleaning under the gum line (subgingival scaling) or for any extractions.

Once your pets blood work has been reviewed by the veterinarian, and they are deemed healthy enough for the procedure, they proceed with an intramuscular injection of sedative medications. This helps them to relax and makes the transition from being awake to under anesthesia (induction) smoother and more comfortable on them.

When the sedatives have made your pet sleepy, the RVT’s (Registered Veterinary Technicians- highly trained veterinary nurses) place an intravenous catheter (IV) in a vein (usually in a front leg). This is why there is a shaved spot on one or several legs. The IV catheter allows venous access for administration of IVF (Intravenous fluids) and medications during the procedure. The IV fluids help to maintain their blood pressure, keep them hydrated, fluids are often warmed to help keep the patient warm and to help support their kidney’s, liver, lungs and other organs as they process the medications given. After the IV catheter is in place an injection of a drug is injected, and this puts your pet under general anesthesia. This is the stage wherein human medicine they tell you to start counting backwards from 100, and you only make it to 98! Once they are ‘induced’ an ET tube (endotracheal tube) is placed into their trachea (windpipe) to provide oxygen and deliver the maintenance gas anesthesia (isoflurane) that will keep the ‘asleep’ during the
procedure.

During the anesthesia, your pet’s heart rate, respiration rate, SpO2 (how much oxygen is in their blood), and blood pressure are monitored. Once all of the monitoring equipment is set up and attached to your pet – the dental procedure can begin.

The RVT removes any significant accumulations of calculus (the hard brown coloured stuff on their teeth) and then ‘charts’ their teeth (takes an inventory of which teeth they have and if they are diseased). The veterinarian then examines each tooth visually and by using a probe around the gum line to look for signs of periodontal disease ABOVE and at the gum line. Dental radiographs are taken to look for signs of periodontal disease BELOW the gum line. Think of teeth like icebergs – you only see 90% of the tooth- the rest is under the gums and in the bones of the jaw.

Once, infected teeth have been identified, intraoral dental nerve blocks (numbing agents) are given to your pet, so they do not feel the extractions happening. Teeth that have two and three roots have to be sectioned (cut) into individual pieces using a dental drill. This makes the removal easier and faster, which is better for your pet. Often the gums had to be incised (cut) and reflected (pushed back) from the teeth and bone to make extraction more comfortable and prevent damage to the sensitive gums. Once the tooth is removed the gums are sutured (stitched) back together to cover the defect (hole) where the tooth was. The suture material used is absorbable (will dissolve on its own and doesn’t need to be removed). Some teeth are extracted very easily/quickly, but other’s- like the large canine teeth or the carnassial teeth (the BIG molar like the tooth on the top jaw) can take half an hour!

After all the diseased teeth have been extracted, the RVT will scale and polish all remaining teeth. The dental procedure is now complete, and your pet is recovered and woken up from the anesthesia. The pet stays on the IV fluids for several hours after they have woken up to maintain venous access for administering medications, to help keep them hydrated and to support their body as their organs continue to process the drugs they were given.

Hopefully, this helps unveil some of the ‘mystery’ behind what happens after you drop your pet off for the dental procedure. If you have any questions- don’t hesitate to contact your veterinary team.

Written by Dr.Nichelle Peck, DVM

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We are so pleased with the level of service and care we received. We are new clients to the clinic…

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Every time I bring one of my pets here, I always feel at home. Everyone is always so friendly! When…

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The vets and techs have always taken very good care of our two dogs and 4 cats. They are…

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Very friendly staff,caring and thorough. Heads up to Dr. Hobbs. She supported me through a difficult time.…

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COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

The following changes are effective as of Tuesday, March 24, 2020:

1. We are currently operating a “closed waiting room” policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain in your vehicle and use your cell phone to call us at 506.382.0061. We will take a history from outside of your vehicle, and bring your pet into the clinic for an examination with the veterinarian. We will then return to your vehicle with your pet to discuss our recommended treatment plan. If you do not have a cell phone please knock our door to let us know you have arrived and then return to your vehicle.

2. We are continuing to accept appointments for urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations. All other services will be scheduled for a later time.

3. We are still OPEN with the following hours: Monday to Friday: 8:00 - 5:00 pm and Saturday 9:00 am - 2:00 pm.

4. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 3-5 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the hospital. Our staff will bring your order to your car and take payment over the phone. You can also use our online store and have your food delivered directly to your home. To sign up for the online store, visit our website.

5. For the time being, we are not accepting cash as payment. Credit cards and debit card payments are still available.

Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our roles. As such, we have taken measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

- Your dedicated team at Mountain Road Animal Hospital