Dental Disease or Gum Inflammation (Periodontitis, Gingivitis, etc)
Your German Shepherd can’t brush its teeth, hence it can easily suffer from Periodontitis or Dental Disease from the spread of bacteria in its gums. Periodontitis is the single most common type of infectious dental disease in German Shepherds and is generally spread by the bacteria in plaque, especially when not properly controlled by regular brushing and cleaning.
Dental Disease and Gum Inflammation can not only lead to the loss of teeth, but also to other ailments much further down the line since the bacteria are ingested with food and water on a daily basis!
Who Gets Dental Disease or Gum Inflammation
Every German Shepherd can get Dental Disease or Gum Inflammation several times during their life. Contributory however would be a bad diet, such as sweetened industrial food, sweetened treats during the day, and inadequate cleaning of the teeth and gums.
There are a number of warning signs of Periodontitis, Gingivitis etc. To start with, your dog will have bad breath, sometimes accompanied by bleeding of the gums. With just these symptoms, this ailment can still be stopped and treated relatively easily. However, once it develops further, the next stage of symptoms may include tooth loss, tooth extrusion, ulcers in the mouth, gum recession, and poor appetite due to pain. The last stage would be the symptoms of seemingly unrelated diseases as a consequence of ingesting the bacteria with food and water on a daily basis.
Also note that if your German Shepherd doesn't like to drink the fresh water you provide, it may simply be that your dog's gums are inflamed and overly sensitive to the temperature of the water. Provide the fresh water at either room temperature or (if your dog is outside) at about 22 degrees Celcius or 72 Fahrenheit.
Actually diagnosing a Dental Disease or Gum Inflammation starts with a full mouth inspection by the vet. Unfortunately, since 70% of the teeth of a German Shepherd are below the gum line, an X-ray cannot always be avoided if the vet must see what is happening below the gum line. If your GSD didn't get used to the vet inspecting its mouth etc as a puppy, general anaesthesia may be required for the dental examination.
Avoiding and Treating Dental Disease and Gum Inflammation
The easiest way to avoid Dental Disease and Gum Inflammation in your German Shepherd is to gently brush its teeth every other day with a dog dental product. Important are gentle downward movements, not across, so as not to hurt the gums. Ideal is to use an artificial dental finger for this. In addition, add Plaque Off to the food, every other day, to the latest meal of the day (so that it can work overnight as much as possible).
You should also have your dog's teeth checked when you visit the vet - every 6 months or so. However, if you do what I write here, you'll hear from your vet: "Teeth and Gums are in perfect condition", and the vet won't charge you anything for dental treatment.
To treat an early Dental Disease or Gum Inflammation, you can spray Petzlife Oral Care once around the upper teeth and once around the lower teeth - both in the evening before sleeping, when your German Shepherd is most unlikely to drink. This natural medicament will mix with your dog's saliva and improve oral health and also promote fresh breath.
The advantage over the typical (cheaper) antiseptic mouth wash is that this dog oral care spray is alcohol-free and does not destroy the oral flora. You probably don't know but the typical antiseptic mouth wash destroys not only harmful bacteria but the oral flora too - which is why your poor fellow family members have to use the mouth wash regularly, or their bad breath is soon unbearable.
Bad breath is the result of an oral flora that has been destroyed - either 1) by bacteria, 2) by stomach acids too frequently finding their way to the mouth because of a Digestive Disorder (see 5), or 3) by mouth wash, yes! Therefore, better give your human family members an alcohol-free, more natural mouth wash with the added benefit to cleanse and heal smaller oral wounds too, and give your canine family members Petzlife Oral Care.
Serious cases of Dental Disease or Gum Inflammation the vet will treat with more antiseptics and a series of dental procedures such as ultrasonic scaling, root planning and pocketing in the teeth to remove the affected areas.
To avoid such serious cases (and the related vet bills!), you could try the top oral health spray, although it's expensive. However, as always, this is relative: When you compare the cost of regularly using this remedy with the vet's bill for any of the above measures, you would immediately agree that even Leba III is worth every ounce.
Another factor that should not be overlooked is that you can actually avoid that your dog will have to go under anesthesia just to have its teeth cleaned or treated - which regularly puts enormous stress on a German Shepherd, especially at age.
Unfortunately, to treat Dental Disease or Gum Inflammation, often the average vet may try to prescribe antibiotics (again!). Another situation where antibiotics are both unnecessary and inappropriate - read our Important Introductory Notes 5 to 7! Conversely, holistic vets often recommend exactly these two oral care remedies, Petzlife and Leba III.
Nevertheless, note that in severe cases tooth extraction may be required to stop the spread of the disease through your dog’s mouth.