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Veterinary Pet Insurance Data Reveals Pet Dental Health a Low Priority for Many Pet Owners
Date:2/1/2008

ved nearly 13,000 claims, more than any previous year, for periodontal disease, abscessed teeth, and root canal therapy. VPI saw the greatest increase over the last three years in claims for surgical treatment of periodontal disease. In 2007, VPI received 7,629 claims for surgical treatment of periodontal disease, with an average submitted fee of $361. In comparison, VPI received 4,913 claims in 2005 for surgical treatment of periodontal disease with an average submitted fee of $298. Abscessed teeth and root canals also increased in frequency and proved costly in 2007 with average submitted fees of $244 and $766, respectively.

The American Veterinary Dental Society reports that 70 percent of cats and 80 percent of dogs show signs of oral and dental disease by the time they are 3 years old. Oral and dental disease can be a source of pain for pets and can be associated with other more serious diseases. To prevent these serious health problems, pet owners should have their pets' oral and dental health evaluated by a veterinarian regularly. At home, pet owners can monitor their pet for common signs of tooth decay, such as bad breath and tooth discoloration, and implement a dental hygiene regimen. Regular brushing and chew toys can help keep tartar off the visible surface of pets' teeth.

The most effective preventive treatment for dental disease is a professional teeth cleaning. Only with a professional cleaning is a veterinarian able to fully assess an animal's dental health, take X-rays as needed, scale bacteria and tartar off of tooth surfaces as well as from under the gum line, polish and perform more advanced procedures if necessary. This can result in improved overall health and longevity of a pet by preventing or aiding in early detection of dental conditions. VPI's new Pet WellCare Protection(SM) Premier Coverage rider, designed to help pet owners pay for routine care procedures, reimburses $100 for dental cleaning. Benefits available with VPI's Pre
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SOURCE Veterinary Pet Insurance
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