The RCHS would like to remind you that February is National Pet Dental Health month. An astonishing 80% of dogs and 70% of cats show signs of oral disease by age 3. Symptoms of gum disease in dogs and cats include yellow and brown build-up of tartar along the gum line, red and swollen gums, persistent bad breath or pain or bleeding when you touch the gums or mouth. Watch for a change in eating or chewing habits, pawing at the face or mouth and depression. If you notice any of these symptoms, please seek veterinary care. Pet owners should have a regular dental care regimen at home, which includes brushing the pet’s teeth with specially formulated toothpastes. Make sure your veterinarian checks your pet’s teeth at your annual visit, and talk to your vet about a plan for good oral health for your pet so you can stay ahead of any potential dental issues. Left untreated, periodontal disease can cause oral pain, tooth loss and potentially other complications.