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Dental hygiene is essential for keeping dogs and cats happy and healthy. Fortunately, the Michigan Humane Society is now better equipped to tackle dental disease. The organization was one of seven that received dental health grants from the Banfield Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of pets and communities.

The Banfield Foundation was established in 2015 by the Banfield Pet Hospital and has given over $1 million in grants, impacting more than 33,000 pets.

The seven dental grants awarded total $55,000 and are the result of money raised through Banfield Pet Hospital’s second children’s book, “My Very, Very Smelly Breath.” This scratch-and-sniff book educates kids on the importance of pet dental health. It was available at Banfield Pet Hospitals across the country. All of the proceeds from the book went to help provide dental care to pets in need.

“Dental disease is the most common disease for pets seen at Banfield Pet Hospital, impacting 76 percent of dogs and 68 percent of cats, and is very common for shelter pets, especially as they get older,” said Dr.George Melillo, regional medical director for the northeast region of Banfield Pet Hospital and board member for the Banfield Foundation. “We are happy that the children’s book not only educates families on the importance of pet dental health but also allowed us to ensure an estimated 3,500 pets a year get the care they need from these shelters.”

The grants will be used to purchase machines that enable the grant recipients to provide onsite dental cleanings, conduct tooth extractions, or take and analyze x-Rays. The grant recipients include

PAWS Atlanta in Decatur, Georgia
Michigan Humane Society in Bingham Farms, Michigan
Sacramento SPCA in Sacramento, California
Kansas Humane Society in Wichita, Kansas
Humane Society of North Texas in Fort Worth, Texas
Connecticut Humane Society in Newington, Connecticut
Spartanburg Humane Society in Spartanburg, South Carolina

“The animals we receive are all ages and come from all backgrounds. Many are middle-aged and older and are in great need of dental work. When we are able to address these problems, the shine comes right back to the eyes and hearts of these pets,” said Gordon Willard, executive director for the Connecticut Humane Society. “I cannot adequately capture how much this grant from the Banfield Foundation enhances our capacity to deliver this care. It is really life altering for those we serve.”