Charlie is a sea otter at the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific. Aquarium staff noticed his a decreased appetite and he was showing signs of oral pain. A sedated exam by the aquarium veterinarian revealed food entrapment between the mandibular fourth premolars and first molars, which was causing gum recession and inflammation. So, the aquarium made the call to Dr. Brook Niemiec and his team at Veterinary Dental Specialties & Oral Surgery.
While under anesthesia, Charlie first received dental radiographs (x-rays), which is the only way to accurately diagnose any animal’s level of dental disease or condition. The radiographs revealed periodontal disease with bone loss between the premolars and molars.
Treatment was extraction of mandibular fourth premolars in order to eliminate crowding and food entrapment and maintain the periodontal health of the mandibular first molars. This means Charlie keeps vital teeth and the premolar extractions will help to prevent future periodontal disease.
Post operative veterinary dental radiographs showing extraction of right and left fourth premolars.
We were happy to hear from the aquarium that Charlie is doing great, has resumed his appetite and is back to his playful sea otter self.