Have you ever wondered about your dog’s teeth? Do you ever think about how many teeth your dog has or what you should do to take care of them? Have you ever considered whether your dog should go to the dog dentist?
Many pet owners don’t think much about their dogs’ teeth, but in fact, teeth are very important to dogs. As a pet owner with a dog, you should learn as much as you can about your dog’s teeth so you can understand why they matter so much to your pet’s health and wellbeing. Read on to find out more!
How Many Teeth Do Dogs Have?
Dogs have more teeth than humans. Where humans have 32 teeth at adulthood, dogs have 42. With ten extra teeth than a human has, dogs can do more with their mouths, and this is one of the many reasons why a dog’s mouth is such an important part of how he explores the world and engages with his surroundings.
Puppies, however, have only 28 teeth. They are not present when a puppy is born, but instead grow in around 3 weeks of age. At about 4 weeks, a puppy should be able to move to his first solid food.
1. When Do Dogs Get Their Adult Teeth?
A puppy’s full set of baby teeth has usually grown in by four months of age, give or take a few weeks. Shortly after this, the baby teeth begin to fall out and the adult teeth start to grow in. These are also called a dog’s “permanent teeth” and should be finished growing in by about seven months of age.
The time when a dog’s adult teeth are growing in is known as his teething period. This time can be challenging for new puppy owners, as the dog may want to chew on everything to relieve his tooth pain.
2. How to Keep Your Dog’s Teeth Healthy and Strong
You can keep your dog’s teeth healthy and strong by giving him dental chews as soon as he has his full set of adult teeth grown in. Puppies can be given teething toys and teething chews designed specifically for puppy purposes, but they should not be given adult dental chews as these could be dangerous to them.
You can also brush your dog’s teeth to help keep them strong and healthy. Additionally, make sure to give him a healthy, well-balanced food blend designed for dogs specifically.
3. Do Dogs Need to Go to the Dentist?
Even dogs who have regular upkeep of their dental health at home through teeth brushing, proper food, and dental treats and chews will eventually need professional dental cleanings from the veterinarian. However, any dog whose dental health is not managed at home will need more frequent help from the vet to maintain strong, healthy teeth.
The vet will need to anesthetize your dog to perform a thorough cleaning. The vet can also pull teeth that are badly damaged or rotting and can also fill cavities and perform other dental procedures at this time.
4. What Happens if a Dog Loses His Teeth?
If your dog loses his teeth, he will be able to survive and thrive with a little help from you. He may need to be switched to a wet food diet, but you will need to be sure and provide one that is made from healthy ingredients and is well-balanced for his health and age.
Additionally, your dog may need to be on pain medication for some time after losing his teeth, especially if they have had to be removed by the vet. Of course, the ideal situation is to never have to go through this with your dog and keeping up with his dental health care is vital.
5. What Are a Dog’s Teeth Used For?
Dogs have four different types of teeth. The incisors are used for grasping and the canines are used for tearing. The premolars and molars are both used for grinding. Dogs use their teeth to bite and shred their prey (or food), then to chew it up before swallowing it.
Puppies do not have molars. They only use their incisors, canines, and premolars. Because of this, puppies must be given softer food than adult dogs receive and should be limited in the type of toys and chews they can play with as well.
Call Veterinary Dental Services
Now that you’ve finished reading this information, you should know a little bit more about your dog’s teeth. You can better understand just how important teeth are to every dog and why it’s necessary to take care of your furry friend’s teeth throughout his life, too. Book an appointment online or call (978) 929-9200 to talk to the vets at Veterinary Dental Services if you have any questions or concerns about your dog’s dental health!