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Key Issues


The mouth is the gateway to the existence of all animals, but at the same time injured and diseased dental or oral structures are a perfect pathway for pathogens to enter the body and cause serious local and systemic repercussions.


Dental diseases of wild animals in zoos and safari parks should not be ignored, but carefully assessed in the light of the animal's general condition and the most appropriate line of therapy embarked upon in a carefully planned procedure.


It is important to understand that the dental needs of animals are quite different from that of humans. Although the basic principles of dental therapy must be followed closely as dictated by the anatomy and physiology in question, treatment must be performed in such a way that the following criteria are satisfied:

  1. The operation must be as predictable as possible so no further sessions of anaesthesia need to be embarked upon to re-attend to the problem.

  2. The treatment must be the least traumatic option allowed by the clinical circumstances.

  3. The operation must be carried out in the shortest possible anaesthetic time to minimise any resultant complications.

  4. The team must be prepared for all eventualities, not only with full knowledge of the regional anatomy and physiology of the patient, but with a totally comprehensive surgical facility appropriate to the size of the patient and the structures to be treated.

  5. The veterinary and dental specialist must operate as a true team aware of each other's priorities to achieve maximum efficiency and harmony.


ZOODENT International works in the closest possible co-operation with the veterinary surgeons of the establishments in planning the facilities and therapy in order to ensure a highly predictable outcome of the operations.

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