While your dog's vet will do everything that they can in order to address dental concerns in a non-invasive way, there might be situations where there is no way to save the tooth. Here, our Oceanside vets discuss tooth extractions in dogs, what to expect after the procedure and the importance of routine dental care.
What Are Dog Tooth Extractions?
When your dog's veterinarian needs to remove a tooth in order to help protect the rest of the teeth and mouth against infection and disease it is referred to as tooth extraction surgery. During the extraction process, your dog will be put under general anesthesia. This keeps them comfortable, prevents them from struggling, and allows our veterinary team to safely complete the extraction.
Why Might a Tooth Extraction Be Necessary?
Poor oral hygiene is the leading cause of dental conditions and diseases and is usually the factor behind the need for tooth extraction surgery. When a tooth is damaged beyond repair, it is important to remove it to prevent infection and pain caused by the decayed tooth.
After your dog has its diseased tooth or teeth removed, you should speak to your veterinarian about the proper home care for your dog to prevent its other teeth from becoming similarly decayed. You should also be sure to bring your dog in for regular professional dental cleanings and examinations. Good dental care is essential to your pup's oral and overall health.
Besides the common cause of gum disease and decay, your dog may also need a tooth removed for the following reasons:
- Fractured or broken teeth - Broken teeth can lead to painful abscesses and infection.
- Deciduous teeth - Baby teeth that do not fall out on their own may need to be removed.
- Oral tumors - The treatment of tumors may involve the extraction of nearby teeth.
- Orthodontic abnormalities - Just like humans, sometimes dogs have teeth where they don't belong.
What To Expect After Your Dog's Tooth Extraction?
In all animals with teeth, there are roots that help to hold these teeth into place, for dogs however there can be as many as three roots that can be holding an individual tooth. All of these roots must be removed in order to successfully extract a tooth.
During your dog's dental surgery they will be under anesthesia. When they wake up they may be groggy or sluggish for the remainder of the day - this is entirely normal.
In most cases, you should be able to bring your dog home the same day as the procedure. If your pet eats primarily hard kibble, you can soften it in warm water for a few days before serving. You should also avoid playing any tugging games with your dog until their mouth has completely healed, which typically takes around 2 weeks.
You may also notice traces of blood in your dog's saliva. While this is normal, there should not be any significant bleeding. If there is, contact your veterinarian immediately.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.