While most pet owners generally appreciate the importance of frequent trips to the vet and regular doses of both prescription and non-prescription pet medication, animal dentistry is something that is often overlooked.
However, while many of us just accept 'dog breath' to be a natural characteristic of most pets, the truth is that foul odours could be a sign of poor oral health.
Dr Mike Stahl of the Centennial Hospital in Colorado Springs, Colorado, is now urging all pet owners to be more vigilant when it comes to maintaining the health of their animals' teeth, saying that "many pet owners do not realise their pets have an oral health problem until serious damage has already occurred".
While specially-formulated pet food can help to keep your furry friend's teeth in good condition, Dr Stahl is encouraging all owners to "make dental care part of regular veterinary services".
In fact, Dr Stahl goes as far as to insist that some 85 per cent of pets over the age of four suffer from periodontal disease, which can lead to tooth loss and gum infections. Owners wishing to avoid this should therefore play close attention to their animals' oral health.