Does your dog have a broken tooth?
Although uncommon, it’s not impossible for dogs to break their teeth, especially when chewing on tough or hard toys. Puppies are more prone to breaking their teeth, but older dogs can suffer from this problem as well, especially if they have poor dental health to begin with.
6 TIPS FOR HOW TO RESPOND IF YOUR DOG HAS A BROKEN TOOTH
In this article, you’ll find out some basic information to help you understand what to do if your dog breaks a tooth. Use these tips to respond appropriately to the problem and recognize when it might be time to take your pet to the veterinarian as well.
Below are 6 tips for what to do if your dog has a broken tooth:
CAREFULLY CHECK THE TOOTH
As soon as you think there might be a problem, try to check your dog’s tooth carefully. If she is in a lot of pain, she may not let you do this, so be cautious when trying to get a good look.
By looking at your dog’s tooth, you should be able to tell whether or not she has broken it. This can help you determine when the problem may be a more concerning one.
LOOK FOR SIGNS ON TOYS AND FOOD
If you can’t tell whether or not your dog’s tooth is broken by looking, or if you’re trying to determine how serious the damage is, look for signs of dental issues on your dog’s toys and food. If there is blood on her favorite toy or around her food or water dishes, then she may have an injured or broken tooth.
Additionally, if your dog avoids chewing on certain types of toys or is unwilling to eat dry food that she normally enjoys eating, these can also be signs of dental health problems.
CHECK FOR SIGNS OF PAIN
Watch your dog to see if she is showing any signs of pain. Every dog is different, and signs of pain may look very different in your dog than they do in others.
Watch for any indication that she may be favoring her sore mouth by avoiding food or toys, and see if she will let you touch the outside of her mouth without any issue as well.
If you can, look for signs of redness or swelling. Frequent bleeding may also indicate irritation of the gums, which could be caused by a broken dog tooth. A foul smell coming from your dog’s mouth may indicate an infection.
CONTACT THE VET
Once you have had a chance to determine whether or not the tooth is broken, it’s time to decide when to call the vet.
If the tooth is broken or if your dog is in a lot of pain, then you need to contact a veterinarian for more information and assistance.
Let the vet know that your dog has broken a tooth and that she is in pain, but it isn’t an emergency. Emergency appointment slots should be left available at vet offices for those who are dealing with an acute trauma or illness of some type.
PROCEED WITH DENTAL CARE
Bring your dog to her vet appointment on time and listen to what the vet has to say about her tooth and her overall health condition.
If she is otherwise healthy, the vet will likely recommend a quick dental surgery to either bond the tooth back together, perform a root canal, or remove the tooth completely, depending on the severity of the damage.
If your dog is very young, very old, or has an underlying heart condition, she may not be a good candidate for dental surgery. In this instance, your veterinarian may recommend other methods of managing her pain.
PROVIDE APPROPRIATE DENTAL MAINTENANCE
After your dog’s surgery and after her broken tooth has healed, you’ll need to keep up with appropriate dental maintenance for your pet moving forward.
REGULAR TEETH CLEANINGS
Provide regular dog teeth cleanings with the vet and make sure you’re feeding your dog high-quality, nutritious food that is good for her teeth and gums, too.
DENTAL CHEW TREATS
You can also give your dog dental chew treats to help remove plaque buildup on her teeth between cleanings.
BRUSH YOUR DOG’S TEETH AT HOME
Additionally, it’s a good idea to start brushing your dog’s teeth on your own at home as early as possible, so you can prevent the risk of further complications.
CALL US FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT YOUR DOG’S BROKEN TOOTH
As you can see, a broken dog tooth isn’t exactly an emergency, but it is something that needs to be responded to quickly to prevent further pain for your pet. Talk to your vet and schedule an appointment as soon as possible, but not an emergency appointment, if your dog breaks one of her teeth.
If your dog is still a puppy, your veterinarian may recommend just waiting for the baby tooth to fall out naturally. Otherwise, however, the vet will examine your dog’s teeth and give you further instruction from there on how to proceed.
If you have any questions about your dog’s broken tooth, or about their health in general, contact our team at Old Derby Animal Hospital by calling us at (781) 749-2800 or scheduling an appointment online. While a broken dog tooth isn’t always an emergency, it can still cause discomfort in your pet and can lead to further problems down the road if not taken care of right away.