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Oral Hygiene: It’s More Important Than You Think!

Oral hygiene plays a very important role in the overall health of your pet. The buildup of plaque and tartar on the teeth not only contributes to oral pain and bad breath, but can also affect internal organ function. The bacteria that resides in the mouth can easily enter the bloodstream through the gums, quickly spreading to the liver, kidneys and heart. Secondary damage to these organs is one of the most common and most serious side effects of chronic oral disease.  Hemlock Bluffs Animal Hospital is very proactive in treating oral disease and preventing long term ill side effects from lack of oral care. Six month oral exams, routine annual pet dental cleanings and consistent home care are all very important in prevention of disease.  Our Veterinary Dentist provides all these services for pet owners in the Cary, Apex, Fuquay-Varina and Holly Springs areas.

The Complete Dental Prophylaxis

When a dental prophylaxis (cleaning) is needed, your pet will be scheduled for a day visit for the cleaning, and will be dropped off in the morning, and ready to go home by afternoon. Your pet will be evaluated by our Veterinary Dental Specialist for anesthetic safety with a comprehensive exam and pre-anesthetic blood work. A heavy IV sedative will be administered to ensure your pet is comfortable, and once they are very sleepy, an IV catheter will be placed. Warm IV fluids will be started and IV anesthesia will be administered through the catheter. At this point, your pet will be completely asleep. A breathing tube will be passed into the trachea (windpipe) and your pet will be placed on gas and oxygen to maintain their anesthesia. They will then be carefully wrapped in a warm water recirculating pad to maintain appropriate body temperature and keep them warm and cozy during the procedure. Monitoring  equipment will be placed to record the heart rate, respiratory rate, body temperature, oxygenation, anesthesia level and blood pressure. In addition to this equipment, a trained veterinary anesthesia nurse will be assigned to your pet to monitor their parameters constantly. After the teeth are thoroughly cleaned, they will be rinsed, polished, and treated with fluoride. Each tooth will be examined for deep gum pockets or defects, charted appropriately, and photographed. Before and after photographs will be provided to you after your pet’s dental cleaning at the time of dismissal, and you will take home a happier and healthier pet!



The whole experience was wonderful. Getting an appointment scheduled was easy, we were greeted and signed in with no hassles. A tech took our info and Molly was taken in for her procedure. When it was finished, the doctor called and talked to me and we arranged a time for pickup. When I arrived, I met with the doctor and was given review of her procedure and advise for her care for the next 24 hours. We checked out and drove home. Could not have been easier. The staff is wonderful - both caring and efficient.

Barbara Roche

I was very pleased with my first visit. Everyone was very professional and knowledgeable. Both the technicians and the Dr. took their time to get a full history. I really felt like they cared for my dog's health. I have been to other vets where I felt like I was being rushed so they could get to the next patient. This was definitely not the case. I would absolutely recommend Hemlock to anyone looking for a vet.

Jason Black

I love seeing a familiar face as soon as I open the door. I'd follow Justine and Jenny anywhere! Dr. Snyder solved Shelby's problems in a matter of minutes and I've been chasing answers for years. She's phenomenal! Melissa's knowledge and guidance has been beyond my expectations, and getting to know all of the Staff has kept a permanent smile on my face. I feel as if I've been on a long journey eager to establish roots. I'M HOME!

Nancy & Kevin Ziese

From the moment we discussed Sadie's surgery, to the follow-up the day prior, to the calls day of to go over options and 1:1 time with Dr D when we picked her up - it was all wonderful. Everyone seemed to truly care about her and also made sure we were comfortable. The surgery went better than expected and she's doing so well. We could not have imagined going anywhere else for her care.

Erica & Michael Ring

Greatest Pet Place on Earth!!! We have been clients at Hemlock Bluffs Animal Hospital for 5+ years and know the owners and staff quite well! Our pets are always treated with great love and attention, and we feel when we board our pets, they are receiving extraordinary care and staying at a home away from home! We love our vet and staff and highly recommend HBAH!!!

Pam & Chuck Pribble
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