Dog Tooth Extraction – Your In-Depth Guide

Although we humans may not enjoy going to the dentist we understand why it’s important to have regular cleanings. Brushing, flossing, and twice-yearly checkups can help prevent dental issues like cavities. Additionally, during checkups, potential issues can be discovered and treated early.

Dogs, like humans, only have one set of adult teeth and it’s just as important to care for their teeth. Otherwise, dental issues can and likely will develop, resulting in the need for a tooth extraction.

Common Dental Issues In Dogs

The following are common dental issues found in canine patients:

Periodontal Disease

Your pet’s breath doesn’t have to be extremely stinky! The most common cause of bad breath in dogs is periodontal disease which has four stages.

Stage 1

Stage 1 periodontal disease means that there is tartar building up on the teeth. The gums might appear slightly swollen and red. If dental x-rays are taken, no bone loss will be noted. This is the perfect time to perform a dental cleaning so that the dental disease doesn’t progress.

Stage 2

Stage 1 and Stage 2 externally can appear similar but when dental x-rays are taken, up to 25% bone loss will be noted in Stage 2. A dental cleaning is highly recommended at this time.

Stage 3

By the time that dental disease has reached Stage 3, significant bone loss has occurred. At this time, the only options are to either extract the impacted teeth or to have a veterinary dentist perform advanced procedures such as a root canal to save the teeth.

Stage 4

When Stage 4 has been reached the only option is to extract the teeth that have been damaged.

Periodontal disease can be very painful and can make it difficult for your dog to eat. If your vet recommends a dental cleaning you should seriously consider it.

Fractured Tooth

Fractured teeth are fairly common and are typically caused by either trauma or a hard chew. Once damaged, it might be possible to save the tooth with advanced dental work, however, more often than not the tooth needs to be pulled.

Congenital Defects

Although uncommon, congenital defects do occur and can impact the mouth. When a dog doesn’t have a normal bite the teeth can be damaged.

Oral Tumors

Dogs can have oral tumors. When the tumor grows, it can damage the gums, teeth, or bone. This can result in the need for surgery to remove the tumor and the extraction of several teeth.

In addition to these common conditions, studies have shown that untreated dental disease can also cause damage to vital organs.

Dog Tooth Extraction - Your In-Depth Guide 2

Researchers Link Dental Disease To Heart Disease

Larry Glickman, a professor of epidemiology at Purdue University performed a study that showed there is a link between periodontal disease and heart disease in dogs. The results of this study were published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association.

Glickman reviewed the records of nearly 120,000 dogs, choosing about 60,000 with periodontal disease and 60,000 without. He then tracked them over their lifetime and recorded which dogs developed heart disease. He determined that dogs with untreated dental disease have a higher risk of developing dental disease.

Glickman hopes to study the link between dental disease and heart disease in the future.

This study is similar to one performed by researchers at Harvard which showed that bacteria from the mouth can travel to the heart through the bloodstream. The bacteria enter the bloodstream when the gums bleed – bleeding caused by dental disease.

This is a great reason to follow your veterinarian’s recommendations when it comes to taking care of your dog’s mouth.

How Much Do Dog Dentals And Tooth Extractions Cost?

The average cost of a dental cleaning is between $400 and $900 dollars. This price typically includes pre-anesthetic bloodwork, anesthesia, dental x-rays, and cleaning. Extractions, if necessary, are typically extra, between $30 – $60 a tooth. Always ask for an estimate prior to having a dental performed so that you can be prepared for the cost.

If you have pet insurance this cost might be covered under your policy.

Should My Dog Have Their Dental Disease Treated By Their Reg Vet Or A Veterinary Specialist?

While all veterinarians are trained to take care of dental disease, veterinary dentists are board-certified. This means that they have specialized in dentistry and have demonstrated specialist knowledge and expertise in veterinary dentistry. This typically requires extra training.

Typically, it’s best to work with a veterinary specialist if you would like to try and save your dog’s damaged tooth. This is a personal choice. However, it’s important to keep in mind that working with a specialist can greatly increase the cost associated with the dental treatment.

How Can I Help Prevent Dental Disease?

You can always take steps at home to help your dog have good dental health! Recommended steps include:

1. Brushing your dog’s teeth. There are many types of doggy toothpaste on the market! It’s important to use toothpaste specially formulated for dogs because the ingredients in human toothpaste can be toxic for our canine friends. You should brush your dog’s teeth at least once a day.

2. Provide dental treats. There are dental treats and chew toys that are made to help your dog clean their teeth as they chew.
3. Check your dog’s mouth regularly for irregularities. It’s always good to check your pup’s mouth for fractured teeth or oral growths. The earlier a dental issue is found the better.

4. Feed a dental diet. There are diets that are specially formulated to help protect your dog’s teeth. In addition to this, unless your pet is on a strictly regimented diet for another medical condition, avoid feeding only wet food. Dry food helps to clean the teeth while a dog chews.

By following these recommendations you’ll help keep your dog healthy and happy!

The Most Popular Doggy Toothpastes

Here are some of the top-rated canine toothpaste that owners can buy.

Virbac C.E.T. Enzymatic Toothpaste
  • FOR DOGS AND CATS: Enzymatic toothpaste specifically formulated using an enzyme system for dogs and cats to reduce plaque, freshen breath, and...
  • SAFE FOR DAILY USE: Includes no foaming agents so this toothpaste is safe for pets to swallow
  • VET RECOMMENDED: Virbac is the Top Recommended dental brand by Veterinary professionals and Made in the USA

Last update on 2020-08-06 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This toothpaste is poultry flavored which means your dog will love it! The enzymatic system helps to prevent the formation of plaque on the teeth. The best part is that this toothpaste can also be used for cats if you have a dog and cat at home!

Kissable All-Natural Toothpaste For Dogs
  • INCLUDES TOOTHBRUSH AND FINGER BRUSH — The KissAble small dog toothbrush and finger brush provide a superior clean, while the toothpaste...
  • ALL-NATURAL INGREDIENTS — Made with tea tree oil, which has antiseptic and antifungal properties, and Stevia, which improves taste without...
  • EASY TO USE — Apply a dab of toothpaste on the toothbrush. Use short, horizontal strokes making sure to reach every tooth

Last update on 2020-08-06 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Thanks to this toothpaste you won’t mind those doggy kisses! This sweet paste also helps to prevent tartar and is flavored with vanilla for a taste your pets will adore.

Vetoquinol Enzadent Enzymatic Toothpaste
  • Enzadent Toothpaste contains a delicious poultry-flavored enzymatic solution for cats and dogs
  • Help eliminate your pet’s bad breath and combat harmful bacterial growth in your cat or dog’s mouth
  • Non-foaming toothpaste removes food debris and plaque for healthy, polished teeth and fresh breath

Last update on 2020-08-06 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Another enzymatic toothpaste that is poultry flavored. This paste battles bacteria that cause tartar, stopping the problem before it starts.

Nylabone Advanced Oral Care
  • Vet-recommended puppy dental care kit promotes healthy teeth and gums
  • Puppy toothbrush features soft bristles and an angled neck for better reach
  • 2.5 ounce bottle of puppy toothpaste features Denta-C that's scientifically proven to help reduce plaque that harbors bacteria

Last update on 2020-08-06 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Nylabone toothpaste is one of the only peanut butter flavored pastes available. When used in combination with one of Nylbone’s dental chew toys, your dog will have fresh breath and clean teeth!

If you’re new to brushing your dog’s teeth, remember, this is a learning experience for them as well. Not all dogs respond well to the first few attempts to brush the teeth. Start off slow and let them investigate both the toothpaste and the brush.

Begin by gently brushing the front teeth for a few seconds each day, slowly adding more of the mouth each time you brush. Over time, this will become a daily habit that they will look forward to!