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Should I get Cindy's dental cleaning done now... need advice

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
On Tuesday, we took Cindy to the vet for her mandatory rabies shot and check up. Cindy is really scared of going to the vet, it's very traumatic for her. We got through the exam, blood work, getting urine, and rabies shot, and brought her home. She went under the bed for awhile after I came home from work, but came out that night.

One of the things that came out of the exam is that her teeth really need cleaning. We were going to call to get an appointment. Before we could do that, we got a call from the vet with two thing: there were crystals in her urine, and something in her blood test made the vet want to check for heartworms. We've been through both things before, and the crystals turned out to be from the lab, and we had chest xrays for the possible heartworm problem, and her heart was fine. But because of that issue, the vet wanted to wait on the dental until the tests came back (and so did we). We had to take her back in today to get her urine retested, and there are no crystals. Today was traumatic for all of us; I pretty much had to chase her around the house to get her into the carrier. she was so scared.

The heartworm test came back negative and the vet wants to schedule the dental. Cindy is still under the bed at 8:00 PM, and I feel like we've taken several steps backward from getting her to trust us and not hide. If I have to take her in there a third time, and leave her all day, what is that going to do to her? Will we be back to square one when she first came here and didn't trust us, was afraid to come downstairs, hid under the bed, etc.? I don't want her to have to live like that, and it just breaks my heart that she was so happy before all these vet visits.

Long story to ask this advice: should I have the dental done now, or should I wait a few months until she's over these visits? Or do it now and just start working on getting her to trust us again after it's over? She internalizes everything, hides under the bed, and broods on it. I wish she could be more like Swanie. He threw such a hissy fit he had to be sedated for the vet to do the exam. And 10 minutes after he got home, he's over it.

Thanks for your opinions.
post #2 of 11
DOes CINDY need a DENTAL , ie does the vet think she needs a extraction???... I ask cause I have found many vets just recommend dentals like RXs diets for healthy animals ... How old is Cindy( forgive me as I likely know but) ???
post #3 of 11
I know a lot of people disagree with me, but I'll never have Jack put under anesthesia simply for a cleaning. If he's having a problem or under anesthesia for something else, fine.
post #4 of 11
I would suggest talking with the vet and seeing how urgent the vet feels the problem is. If there are broken or decaying teeth, that might mean she really needs the cleaning soon rather than later as that kind of infection can allow bacteria into the bloodstream. If there are no pressing issues, you might ask the vet if the dental can wait a couple of months--also many vets have deals on dental cleanings in January and February. Cleanings really are important since cats aren't as cooperative as people about having their teeth looked at, and it is impossible to get a good look at the condition of the teeth just below the gumline without anesthesia.
post #5 of 11
I think I'd wait a while if it was me. Doesn't have to be two months; a couple weeks ought to do it.
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
DOes CINDY need a DENTAL , ie does the vet think she needs a extraction???... I ask cause I have found many vets just recommend dentals like RXs diets for healthy animals ... How old is Cindy( forgive me as I likely know but) ???
I'm not smart enough to know if she really needs a cleaning. She has some of that red stuff on her gums and her teeth are stained with black lines. The vet thinks we should be proactive and catch any problems before she needs extractions. What I don't want to do is wait until she does need one or is in pain to deal with it.

Sadly, I don't really know how old Cindy is. The shelter guessed at anywhere from 2 to 5 when we got her in Dec 2005.
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks all for the input.

While I was out, DH scheduled an appointment for Nov. 20. I still don't know if we're doing the right thing, and there's still time to cancel if I decide it's not the right thing.
post #8 of 11
I think the sooner the better, dental is really important if she has bad gums etc. Often they don't find cracked teeth and other problems until they get in there. If the doc has been after you, she probably needs it, and you said her gums are inflamed. I had Fang done a year ago, and he had two cracked teeth that had to be removed and he was only two years old, but he had a rough life before I got him.does your kitty have bad breath? that's a sure sign something is wrong.
After that she can relax and not have to go for a long time.
post #9 of 11
It sounds like possible Gingervitis( no that aint spelled right) ... and I would say sooner rather than later
post #10 of 11
On his annual physical a few years ago, my cat Sammy (then aged 12-13) had an infected tooth that had to be pulled. The vet recommended that he get his teeth cleaned at the same time as a preventative measure. Though it was expensive, we figured since he was going to be put out for the removal of his tooth, that we may as well get his teeth cleaned at the same time. It ended up being the right decision - he hasn't had any problems with his teeth since, and his gums and teeth have stayed quite healthy.

I'm not sure that we would have done it if he didn't have a tooth problem in the first place.. but it did turn out to be the right decision.
post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
It sounds like possible Gingervitis( no that aint spelled right) ... and I would say sooner rather than later
Yes, that's what the vet said, I couldn't remember what she called it.

Then dental is scheduled for Nov. 20. She's still behind the bed and won't come out. At least she's not under the bed. She finally came downstairs last night around 10:00 and played, and she slept on our bed some last night. This morning though she headed back behind the bed. Hopefully, after we get this dental thing out of the way, we won't have to visit the vet for the awhile and can work on regaining her trust. I so hate to see her hiding back there. And she definitely doesn't want anything to do with me right now
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