Here’s how you put a smile on a pet’s face: You give them a chance, no matter their age, and you heal what’s hurting.

Two grants recently awarded to the Connecticut Humane Society will help do just that.

Funding from the John T. and Jane A. Wiederhold Foundation has brought brand new dental equipment to CHS’ Westport location for tooth cleanings, extractions, x-rays and more. A grant from the Grey Muzzle Organization is supporting medical care at CHS for senior dogs from municipal animal control shelters.

A growing number of pets require mouth makeovers before they’re ready for adoption, because dental damage can have a domino effect. (Ever had a tooth ache or even gum problems? You probably felt cranky, in pain and hesitant to eat.) Forgoing dental attention can even cause life-threatening complications and infections that spread through an animal’s body.

Luckily, CHS veterinarians are specially trained to perform oral surgeries. Before now, they could only complete them in CHS Newington’s fully-equipped medical department. Today, thanks to the Wiederhold grant, they can perform them in CHS Westport’s medical suite, too. That means pets don’t need to take a trip to Newington just for this special care, they’re ready for adoption sooner, and the surgical schedule in Newington can accommodate other pets in need.

As for the Grey Muzzle grant, CHS is one of just 62 animal welfare groups across the country to receive the funding to help more senior dogs in 2019.

CHS is committed to partnering with municipal animal control officers across the state to give bright futures to at-risk older dogs. With few, if any, funds for basic veterinary care—let alone specialized care—animal control departments count on CHS to provide pets with pro bono medical care ranging from routine spays/neuters and vaccinations, to amputations, to allergy treatment.

As pets age, their medical needs grow challenging. Many are long overdue for essential medical care, like Penelope, a 9-year-old schnauzer/poodle mix found as a stray by animal control. She had mammary tumors, rotting teeth, and skin problems, but found a new family excited to love her after months of care at CHS.

CHS is 100% donor-funded. The generosity of individuals and foundations ensures pets of all ages get adopted feeling a lot better and smiling a lot more.