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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We adopted a cat a few weeks ago. The adoption center pays for an initial visit to one of their vets and some initial treatment. At the initial visit, the vet pointed to Mimsey's gums, which had some redness, and recommended in-hospital dental cleaning. The vet gave us a written estimate for the procedure. The adoption center refused to pay, saying the matter was not urgent. I talked again to the vet, who said the cleaning did not have to be done immediately, but should be done soon. I then sent an email to a senior person and received a reply which included this:

"Dr. ___ [the vet for the initial visit] reports that she did note some redness of the gums, but that Mimsey possessed none of the clinical findings or symptoms that would suggest the need for immediate attention. These signs include broken teeth, infected teeth, teeth with visible caries/cavities, advanced dental tartar, advanced gum disease and dental or oral pain. These symptoms and physical exam findings are the qualifiers we use to determine that an animal requires dental care prior to being put up for Adoption. At this time, it is agreed by Mimsey's veterinarians that it is not currently in her best interest to undergo an anesthetic procedure and dental cleaning for non - clinical gum redness. In fact, we find that sometimes the stress of entering a shelter environment (even one as state-of-the-art as ours) and then entering another new environment (like a great new home) can sometimes lead to transient medical issues that resolve themselves as the pet acclimates. While I do recommend monitoring Mimsey's gums, I do not recommend putting Mimsey through anesthesia for a condition that may resolve in time and which, at the very least, does not require medical attention at this time. For these reasons, we will not be providing dental care for Mimsey."

Does this make sense?
 

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well, I'm no expert, but it seems to me that by the time a cat has "..broken teeth, infected teeth, teeth with visible caries/cavities...." etc. there's not much to be done... do they know anything about prevention?

or....maybe I'm wrong.
 

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Well, it's kind of like people health insurance. There are conditions which they don't pay for if it's not an immediate emergency. People with flat feet are a good example. Health insurance won't pay for orthotics despite the fact that the gait can erode hip placement and cause knee problems in these patients, but it's not life threatening.

The check up at a shelter usually includes a wellness visit. When adopting a cat, it's a good idea to check it thoroughly prior to the adoption. They are bound to disclose special needs which require ongoing care (diabetes, thyroid disease, etc.), but that's about it.

I adopted Egypt with 2 broken canines. Until now, they have not needed treatment, but I might have had to pay for immediate attention if the problem were more serious. That was a risk I knew I was taking when I adopted her with this condition.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm very concerned that the vet told me that Mimsey needed treatment, not immediately but soon, and gave me an estimate, and now I hear that not only is the treatment unnecessary but would be a bad idea at this time. I'd rather not put Mimsey through anaesthesia and a hospital stay if it can be avoided, but I'd like what's best through her long-term health.

Is there such a thing as gingivitis that cures itself?

Is the standard recommendation to wait until the condition is very serious before doing dental cleaning?

Any idea how quickly it could develop into something more serious?

How am I supposed to monitor her gums?
 
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