Sparrow – A Special Dog Who Deserved Special Care!

Sparrow - Australian Shepherd Puppy - Wisconsin

Meet Dunham Lake Captain Jack “Sparrow”

Australian Terrier,  Dunham Lake Captain Jack “Sparrow” was born in 2012, without his front right leg, a birth defect was likely due to his mother being exposed to something toxic early on in her pregnancy.  Despite the missing leg, Sparrow continued to thrive, had a slight problem with his right eye (ulcerated cornea), but all other development seemed to be normal.

As he started to lose his puppy teeth, I noticed he would make a funny grinding noise with this teeth and his breath smelled like metal (blood). I watched him carefully, as I do with all my puppies. I had some concerns about the way some of the teeth seemed to be coming in on right side of his mouth, but I also thought, it would straighten out as the puppy teeth fell out.

Examining Puppy Teeth - Wisconsin Vet Dentist

Sparrow’s owner examining his mouth lead her to contact Wisconsin Veterinary Dental Specialist Dr. Dale Kressin.

On February 28, 2013, Sparrow was not acting like himself. I looked at this teeth again, they seemed okay, but the smell of his breath was even worse. I opened his mouth wide and then saw the problem. It appeared to me, that his bottom teeth on the right side were actually cutting into the roof of his mouth and creating an open bloody crevice on the right side of the roof of his mouth. There also was that one molar that I had been concerned about, which was protruding outward toward his check on the upper right jaw.  I decided I better put him on a pain killer and an antibiotic just to be on the safe side.

I was quite distressed about this and had planned to bring him into my vet, but decided that it would be better for him to see a veterinary specialist. My daughter quickly started googling Veterinarian Dental Specialist in Minnesota or Wisconsin and located Dr. Kressin’s Eden Prairie office and the University of Minnesota as two possible places that would specialize in Animal Oral Surgery.

I contacted Dr. Kressin who was very kind and he explained some options. I felt very confident that Dr. Kressin was the right vet dentist for Sparrow, but I was hoping that he could be seen in his Eden Prairie office, not in Oshkosh because that is a 6 hour drive from our home. Dr. Kressin explained that if we could get him to Oshkosh, he would evaluate his condition and he could begin treatment or surgery that same day. I told Dr. Kressin I would get back to him very soon, but I was also going to contact the U of M, since that is only 1 1/2 hours from my home.

After discovering that the U of M would not be able to begin any treatment or surgery on Sparrow until the end of the month at the earliest, the decision was easy. I contacted Dr. Kressin and we made an appointment for the following week to have him see Sparrow in Oshkosh.

Upon arrival at Dr. Kressin’s veterinary dental clinic, we were very impressed with Dr. Kressin and his staff, who explained everything to us in detail including what they had planned to explore and the costs associated with everything. As Dr. Kressin worked on Sparrow, he called me to give up dates, which was very comforting. We left Sparrow in excellent hands and we picked him up a few hours later. This experience couldn’t have been any better.

Sparrow - vet dentistry patient - wisconsin vet dentist

Sparrow recovered well after vet dental surgery with Dr. Kressin.

That evening in our hotel room, Sparrow was running around as if he had never had surgery. In just 11 days since Sparrow’s surgery, he continues to do well. His recovery has been on track if not ahead of schedule. I have great expectations that he will continue to improve and be as comfortable and normal as my other dogs.

We can not thank Dr. Kressin enough for his expertise, through diagnosis and decisions he made in the best interest of our little dog. His commitment and dedication to his patients is superb.

To see Sparrow’s videos or more photos, please visit his website at www.dunhamlakecaptainjacksparrow.com

Sparrow - Wisconsin Vet Dentist Patient

Planning for your puppy’s dental health

Dental Care for Puppies - Veterinary DentistryAre you bringing a new puppy home? There’s nothing quite like the first time you and your family hold your new puppy! They are so soft, cuddly and they have that sweet smelling puppy breath when they give you those kisses.

While they don’t stay puppies for long, and the puppy breath eventually fades, there’s still a great deal you can do to help your puppy keep a clean and health mouth into adulthood.

First, you have to commit to maintaining your puppy’s dental health over the long term. This means being prepared for an annual visit to your veterinarian for a complete pet dental cleaning and oral health exam. Anesthesia free pet dental cleanings are NOT of any benefit to your dog and may cause further damage and periodontal disease in the long term, which in addition to being costly to treat, causes your dog a great deal of pain. Your dog has teeth just like you, so a regular visit to the dog dentist is as important as it is for it’s owners.

Second, you can implement regular home dental care for your puppy right away. Brushing your puppy’s teeth with a pet safe dental product is one of the best things you can do to help prevent plaque build up on their teeth. If you begin a puppy teeth brushing routine right away, not only will you be promoting their dental health, but you’ll get them used to their mouth being touched and examined so when they visit the vet dentist, they won’t be as afraid or anxious.

Third, there are a number of veterinary dental products that can assist in promoting good dental health for your puppy. As board certified veterinary dentists, we encourage the use of Veterinary Oral Health Council approved products. VOHC products include chews, water additives and dental diets that are proven to reduce plaque build up on a dogs teeth. Keep in mind that when you choose a chew toy or product for your puppy or even an adult dog, it should be bendable so they don’t break teeth. If you can’t bend it, they could easily fracture a tooth while chewing.

Promoting good puppy dental health through regular pet dental checkups at the veterinarian and providing regular care at home is the best way to keep your new puppy’s mouth clean and healthy. If you see something abnormal in your puppy’s mouth or are concerned about a more serious dental problem, it is a good idea to contact a board certified veterinary dentist who specializes in pet dental care and can offer the best treatment plan.