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What You Need To Know About Feline Stomatitis

Dental disease is quite common among older cats. Like many diseases, there are degrees of severity ranging from mild tartar build up, to gingivitis and, most severe, stomatitis. Cats with stomatitis have mouths that are extremely painful.

If you’re able to look into the mouth of a cat with stomatitis, you’d see that the gums, back of the mouth and tongue are bright red and ulcerated. By the time the disease is that advanced, the teeth are also affected. However, this might not be immediately noticeable since the breakdown starts below the gum line. With time, that breakdown will progress to include the rest of the teeth. Cats with this disease usually have quite bad breath.

How do I know if my cat may be suffering from Stomatitis?

The most obvious symptom of stomatitis is a painful mouth. Signs that your cat may be suffering from a painful mouth include weight loss, a decreased appetite, dropping food outside of their dish, poor grooming habits and lots of salivating. These are all good indicators that something is bothering your cat and should be seen by a veterinarian.

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What starts this painful disease?

It’s the body’s immune system reacting to the bacteria that live in plaque. After a few days, plaque turns into tartar. Tarter is a hard, dark brown material that discolours teeth, causing bacteria to stay in the mouth. The immune system kicks into overdrive to try and get rid of those germs, but in the process, it also ends up attacking the teeth and other tissues in the mouth. The only solution is to remove the tartar from the teeth (de-scaling) and remove any tooth that is diseased. Unfortunately, this can often be a majority of them. Combined with this, we use medications such as antibiotics and anti-inflammatories to reduce pain and the quantity of bacteria. Getting rid of the diseased tissue and bacteria from the mouth is what allows healing to start. For most cats, this is enough to stop the disease forever, but for the odd cat, they can need more antibiotics in the future to keep those bacteria under control.

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Once the dental cleaning and tooth extractions are done and the antibiotics have been started, the mouth heals rapidly. Within a few days, you can expect your cat to start eating and grooming normally again.

Written by Dr Alana Parisi 


Get a Cupcake and Support BC Animals in Need During Treat Week (Feb 24 - Mar 1, 2020)

Van Isle Veterinary Hospital is super excited to be hosting our 4th annual cupcake day fundraiser! BCSPCA celebrates “Treat Week” across the Province from Feb 24th – March 1st 2020 where business, pet owners and animal lovers can bake up a storm and sell treats with the proceeds going to BC animals in need.

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Last updated: September 22, 2020

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we are pleased to advise that effective May 25, 2020 the restrictions on veterinary practices have been lifted. Based on these changes, below are some important updates to our operating policies.


This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!

As you can imagine, we have a significant backlog of surgeries and wellness/vaccine exams to catch up on and we will be working hard over the next several weeks to do just that. We want to thank everyone in advance for your patience while we work through this. Although restrictions have been lifted, our health and safety protocols have not. It is important we continue to follow the guidelines set out by Worksafe BC and social distance our large team as much as possible. This means although we can offer these elective services, we are doing much fewer during the day then we were pre-COVID.



The use of our online store for easy ordering, payment and delivery of our pet's food, flea and tick medications. Orders over $100 can be delivered to your home for free! CLICK HERE


During the first 8 weeks of COVID, we were operating as a 24-hour facility to better serve our community and to maintain social distancing within our team. However, as the COVID-19 situation changes, so do we!

Our team of doctors felt it was important to get back to performing your pet's much needed regular services. In order to do so safely, we had to once again change the way we do business.

We are OPEN with the following hours:

Monday - Friday: 8:00 am - 8:00 pm

Saturday & Sunday: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Thank you for your patience and understanding, and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- Your dedicated team at Van Isle Veterinary Hospital