Dental Cleaning

dental servicesIn an ideal world, pets — like humans — would have their teeth brushed twice a day. Unfortunately we do not live in an ideal world. Pets still need regular dental cleanings. At Sierra Animal Hospital we recommend that older animals and animals with bad teeth have dental cleanings at least once a year, sometimes every 6 months.

We can show you the general condition of your pet’s teeth whenever you come in for an exam. Calculus or tartar on a pet’s teeth can lead to at best bad breath and at worst heart disease, liver and kidney failure. A thorough dental exam and cleaning requires that your pet be put under anesthesia. The calculus can then be removed using an ultrasonic cleaner and then the teeth can be polished. Any loose or suspect teeth can then be X-rayed and removed if required. Broken teeth can be sealed so that they maintain their integrity.

Sierra Animal Hospital uses an all-inclusive routine surgery model, meaning that we offer all pets the same level of excellent care for the same low price.

Some examples of what makes Sierra Animal Hospital the best choice for your pet’s routine procedure are:

Pre-operative blood work: Pre-operative blood work checks for any infection as well as the animal’s liver and kidney function. Healthy liver and kidneys are important as general anesthesia is metabolized in the liver and kidneys. Liver and kidney disease has no external symptoms until ¾ of the organ functionality is gone. Pre-operative blood work is performed for all animals undergoing anesthesia and is included in the price of all routine surgeries.

Sterility: Sierra Animal Hospital uses similar procedures and processes as human hospitals in order to preserve the health of your pet and avoid postoperative infections. Drapes, gowns and instruments are all steam sterilized, in our state-of-the-art autoclave, for each patient. Each patent is surgically cleaned and prepped, and disposable sterile gloves, masks and caps are worn by all members of the surgical team. Your pet will also have a technician constantly monitoring their vital signs via an electronic monitor during the procedure.

Subcuticular Sutures: These are under the skin stitches that the animal will not be able to lick out and will dissolve rather than requiring their removal at a later date. An animal that has normal sutures or staples, can lick or chew them out and may require a second surgery to close their wound. Subcuticular sutures means that most pets will not require an E-collar or a t-shirt to cover the incision site.

Laser: Instead of using a blade for surgery, Sierra Animal Hospital is proud to use a veterinary surgical laser. Because the laser cauterizes as it cuts your pet will experience less bleeding and less post-operative pain. Certain procedures will also have a dramatic reduction in the amount of surgical time required using a laser and therefore making the procedure safer for your pet.

I.V. Fluids: To ensure your pet’s blood pressure, give emergency intravenous access in case of problems and to keep your pet hydrated, Sierra Animal Hospital places an I.V. catheter and provides fluids to in every pet that comes in for routine surgery.

Pain Relief tablets: Pets, like humans, can experience post operative pain lasting several days. Pain relief tablets can help make your pet more comfortable in the days following the surgery and are included in the price of your pet’s procedure.


For a small additional fee Sierra Animal Hospital offers the following options for the added safety and comfort of your pet.

Pain Relief Injection: As soon as your pet awakens from surgery it can be given a pain relief injection intramuscularly to relieve any post operative pain. This also means that you will not have to give a pain tablet for the first 12 hours after your pet’s surgery when it may not be interested in food or treats.