Shelter Dog Dental Day Gives Local Animal Shelters Something to Smile About

Tufts Vet Students Provide Dental Services for Shelter and Rescue Dogs
March 6, 2013

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Rushmie Nofsinger

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GRAFTON--Dogs from local shelters and rescue groups will have their teeth cleaned free of charge on March 7 as part of the fourth annual Shelter Dog Dental Day, an activity of the Tufts Shelter Medicine Program at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University (TCSVM).

Approximately 10 dogs of a variety of breeds and types will be taken to the Luke and Lily Lerner Spay/Neuter Clinic at TCSVM to receive dental services, which will help make them better candidates for adoption. As with humans, proper and routine dental care for dogs is important to maintaining overall health.  A group of 18 third-year TCSVM students, under the supervision of two veterinary dental specialists, will perform the cleanings.

Dr. William Rosenblad, a dentistry clinician at Angell Animal Center in Boston and president of the Tufts University Veterinary Alumni Association, and Dr. Jean Joo, who runs the dentistry service at Tufts VETS and the Foster Hospital for Small Animals at TCSVM, will be supervising the students.  Four veterinary technicians and a board certified anesthesiologist will also participate.

“Shelter Dog Dental Day pairs dogs in need with skilled veterinary students who are gaining hands-on technical experience by helping community shelters and rescue groups,” said Dr. Emily McCobb, Shelter Medicine Program director at TCSVM.

The Tufts Shelter Medicine Program was launched in 2008.  Its mission is to improve the health and quality of life for homeless, displaced, abused and neglected animals through the education of veterinary students, veterinarians and veterinary para-professionals in the principles, core competencies and best practices of shelter medicine.

Shelters and rescue groups participating in Shelter Dog Dental Day include: New England Saint Bernard Rescue, Paws New England, C.A.R.E. South Coast and The Boxer Rescue.  This activity is made possible through the generous support of Abbott Animal Health, which has provided anesthesia and IV fluid supplies, and iM3, which provides all of the dental equipment used in the lab.

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About the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University

Founded in 1978 in North Grafton, Mass., Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University is internationally esteemed for academic programs that impact society and the practice of veterinary medicine; three hospitals and two clinics that combined log more than 80,000 animal cases each year; and groundbreaking research that benefits animal, public, and environmental health.