While people may have orthodontic procedures done (think braces) to improve a smile, for dogs, orthodontic procedures are limited to those situations where they are needed to "eliminate pain or serious malfunction, and are not performed for aesthetic reasons," according to the American Veterinary Dental College
. Dogs who have had orthodontic procedures done should not be shown in conformation or used for breeding as many defects could be passed along to their offspring.
The American Veterinary Dental College
cautions pet owners strongly against anesthesia-free dental cleanings.
To locate a canine dental specialist, visit the website of the American Veterinary Dental College
. The site contains a list of its diplomates.
"Professional dental cleaning and periodontal therapy often come too late to prevent extensive disease or to save teeth," the American Veterinary Dental College
says, adding that multiple problems in the oral cavity can result and may be associated with damage to internal organs in some patients as they age.
According to the American Veterinary Dental College
, vital pulp therapy can be performed on recently fractured teeth in patients under 18 months of age.