A Chat with No-Anesthesia Dental Expert Tracy Johnson

Most Tuesdays, the Healing Wise team of Tracy Johnson and Jacquie Allgire, DVM are on site at Noble Beast to do no-anesthesia teeth cleanings. We asked Tracy to tell us a bit more about her adventures.

How long have you been doing no-anesthesia dentals and how did you get involved?

I started no anesthesia dental cleanings in 2005 and Dr. Jacquie joined me three years later. I knew we would make a great team because we have the same philosophy about providing safe, affordable, gentle care for pets. My first exposure with this service is when I had an elderly Greyhound with a bad tartar problem. Angel, my greyhound, was cleaned every year and I almost lost her to an anesthesia dental at 10. I found someone who provided no anesthesia cleanings and loved it! I never looked back.

We see many owners who don’t think their dog will put up with the cleaning, but they do. How do you relax the dog so that you can do your work? Can you tell if a dog is likely to get too stressed out or bite you?

Dogs are fantastic communicators, you just need to know what to look for. Just about every dog wants to please you, so with that in mind we work together. I give praise, I ask permission and I’ll tell them what I’m going to do. I work within their personalities, if that makes sense. Dogs will also give you fair warning if they’re stressed and I NEVER push myself off on a dog. It’s rare if they won’t allow a cleaning.

Do you ever have to stop mid dental?

I have stopped a dental for different reasons. It’s rare but at times a dog won’t settle, again, I’ll never push the dog, it’s just not worth it. Other times I may stop after cleaning a couple of teeth and notice pockets or a loose tooth that was hidden under the tartar, I then consult with Dr. Jacquie to reevaluate. If we defer the dog for an anesthetic dental, there is no charge.

What is your favorite thing about doing no-anesthesia dentals?

That’s easy. My favorite thing are the dogs. How can you not love working with cute, fluffy, kissable pups? I get unconditional love all day long.

If you are interested in having your dog’s teeth cleaned, please see our events calendar for more information and how to make an appointment.