Ever Think about Your Dogs Teeth

The Resource for Everything About Dogs

Ever Think about Your Dogs Teeth

by Audrey Frederick

I do not know about you, but how often do you think about your dog?s teeth? If you are like me, not too often.

A dog?s teeth should be routinely examined at least once a year by your vet and you, as the pet parent should take a peek inside your dog?s mouth at least every few months.


Well, believe it or not, dog?s can fracture their teeth chewing on any number of substances. A build up of plaque can easily hide an already fractured tooth or one-day you could find your dog?s face severely swollen and a whopping dental treatment bill in your hands.

It matters not what breed or size your dog is, teeth and what a dog does with them all share a common problem, chewing on various things from rocks to hard bones.

The most common culprit is the ?nylon dog bone.? These bones are sold with the idea that they are very beneficial to a dog?s dental health and that may be so. However, they are also the cause of most dental fractures according to many vets, due to their hardness and the way dogs chew.

It seems young dogs and older dogs are the ones most susceptible to fractures from chewing on these bones.

What kind of teeth do dogs have and what ones are the most important?

Puppies are born toothless and within three to six weeks their baby or ?deciduous? teeth will begin to poke through and soon they have 28 teeth.

By the time they are seven to ten months old these teeth will begin to fall out one by one.

Within a year or so, they will have 20 top teeth and 22 bottom teeth to replace their baby teeth.

Dogs have four types of teeth in their mouths, does not matter what breed or size they are, all dogs have the same teeth.

The incisors are located in the front of the mouth and are known as the ?nipping teeth? there are 3 upper and 3 lower teeth.

The canines or the fangs are next and there are 2 upper and 2 lower teeth. These are the ?big? ones and are used grasping and puncturing things.

Next are the gripping teeth known as the premolars. They are behind the canines and there are 4 upper and 4 lower ones

Last but not least are the ?grinders,? 2 upper and 3 lower teeth.

The two most powerful teeth in a dog?s mouth are the 4th upper premolar and the 1st lower molar, they are known as the carnassial teeth.

These teeth overlap when a dog?s mouth is closed and can grip and chew an object with a power we can not imagine.

The teeth that are the most important to save for a dog are the fang and carnassial teeth.

What options are available for your dog should it need dental work?

The only treatments currently available are extractions (pulling the tooth) and root canals.

Both require the dog to be sedated. Of the two choices a root canal is quicker and less painful for the dog.

Extractions can lead to many problems, especially if the first molars or canines are affected. Extractions can cause postoperative pain and require pain medication. The dog has to be kept fairly quiet for a week or so and will have stitches that need to heal.

Root canals seal the tooth and generally a dog needs to take an antibiotic for a week or ten days after and will literally suffer no pain.

Should you dog have a problem with any of its teeth, I suggest a quick trip to your vet to get the problem taken care of.

Prompt attention can save you and your dog a lot of time, pain and suffering.

Keeping our pets healthy is very beneficial not only to the pet, but to our pocketbooks. If the only time you need to visit the veterinarian is for yearly check ups and necessary shots you are saving money. However, it is a wise person that checks his/her dog's mouth at least once or twice every few months to be certain their teeth are in good shape. Please visit me at http://www.cats-and-dogs-on-the-web.com

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