What do I need to know about the dental cleaning & extraction/s procedure my pet went through?

We appreciate your commitment to your pet’s health. The procedure your pet received today will help to prevent future complications such as infections, gingivitis, and periodontal disease. Thank you for doing your part, and being the best parent to your furry baby! 

What did my pet’s cleaning include

  • Your pet received the same care and attention to their teeth today as you do when you visit the dentist. This includes full mouth x-rays, subgingival (below the gum line) scaling, ultrasonic cleaning, and polishing. The doctor may also have recommended other advanced periodontal treatments and possible extractions of diseased teeth.

What can I expect when I bring my pet home tonight?

  • Since your pet had general anesthesia today he/she may be groggy, slightly unstable. Allow your pet to recover in a quiet room at home away from other pets.
  • Some drooling can also be expected. If extractions were performed, it can be normal to see some blood-tinged saliva. The amount of blood should decrease with time. If at any time it is worsening or excessive, please let us know.
  • Some pets are not quite themselves for up to 24-48 hours following anesthesia. Signs such as pacing, panting, whimpering, mild lethargy, and/or restlessness may be noticed. There may also be some degree of discomfort and swelling around the mouth, especially if extractions were performed.
  • A small tube was placed down his/her throat and can sometimes cause irritation for a day or two. If there is persistent coughing for more than two days, please let us know.
  • Your pet was placed on its back for the dental procedure. Therefore it can be normal for them to experience some nasal congestion and/or sneezing. Please let us know if this does not resolve within a few days.

Special Feeding instructions

  • With absorbable sutures in the mouth, it is important to feed your pet a very soft diet (this can be canned/wet food or dry food soaked in water until very soft) until they return for their recheck or otherwise directed. This also means no hard toys, treats, etc that may interfere with the healing of the extraction sites. 
  • Tonight, gradually feed your pet only 1⁄4 to 1⁄2 the normal amount as pets may feel nauseous after anesthesia and vomit if given large amounts of water or food. Tomorrow you may continue food and water amounts as usual (as long as the food is still soft). Please refrain from offering any hard toys, rope toys, bones or treats until their recheck to allow the gum tenderness to fade and the extraction sites to fully heal. 
  • Your pet may not want to eat at all tonight. If your pet is still not eating the day after the procedure, please let us know. It is possible that your pet is in pain from extractions and the pain is preventing your pet from eating. You can give one dose of pain medication without food (if they will not eat) to see if this helps. If not, please let us know. 


  • In case a recheck appointment wasn’t already scheduled when you picked up your pet, please schedule one in 10-14 days. Recheck sooner if you have any concerns. At-home dental care (brushing, chews, water additives) may only be resumed once the extraction sites are deemed to be healed at their recheck.

Should there be an emergency when our hospital is closed (our hours are from 10am-10pm), please bring your pet to one of the following emergency hospitals to be evaluated: 

  • Wheatridge Animal Hospital (303-424-3325)
  • Veterinary Emergency Group (720-574-9834)

Thank you for trusting us with your pet’s health, and for being the BEST pet parent to your furry baby!

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