Your dog’s teeth are an essential part of their daily lives. Their teeth are designed to shear, crush and hold all kinds of food.
Dental health is very important for dogs, and establishing a routine of annual professional cleaning and checkups is a crucial component. This will ensure your pup’s chompers stay healthy for life.
The teeth in our mouths play a vital role in keeping our bodies healthy. They are used to chew and tear food into smaller pieces, which then aid in the digestion process. Our teeth are broadly classified as incisors, canines, premolars and molars.
Incisors are the sharpest of all our teeth, and help in cutting and tearing food. Canines are the longest of all our teeth, and are also used to tear and crush food. The next group of teeth are called premolars or bicuspids and they help in breaking up larger chunks of food before chewing them.
There are eight premolars in total – two on each side of the mouth. The premolars are located between the canines and molars, and these are where we chew our food.
Our molars are located at the back of our mouths and are used for chewing and crushing food. These teeth are large and flat, with a series of ‘cusps’ or elevations to assist in breaking up larger pieces of food.
They have one to two roots firmly implanted into the bone for stabilization. This allows us to easily remove any plaque build-up or tooth decay that may occur, as well as avoiding any damage to the immature roots of our permanent teeth, real NSFW stuff.
The molars are divided into the upper and lower teeth, and we have twelve in total. The first molar (upper canine) comes through first and the second molar (lower canine) is usually ready to come out around the age of eight.
Your molars also have a flat biting surface that helps in chewing and grinding food, and they are made of hard enamel to help protect them from damage. To protect your molars, it’s important to brush them twice a day with a toothpaste that has fluoride in it. You should also floss between your teeth regularly to prevent plaque buildup.
Most dogs have eight molars in their mouths, with the first and second molars being the most prominent. The other six molars are smaller and not as prominent.
In some cases, a dog can develop a tooth defect that causes serious problems. This can range from a minor issue, such as a broken tooth that needs to be repaired with a filling, to a more major condition that requires an extraction.
A common problem in puppies and young dogs is a missing tooth or teeth. This can be due to trauma, infection or other factors. If a tooth is missing it can cause a number of issues, from difficulty with chewing to increased plaque buildup in the mouth.
It’s also possible to have a retained baby tooth that never erupts, although this is less common. Retained juvenile teeth are not good for the health of the adult tooth that will erupt later on in life, so it’s best to see your veterinarian as soon as you notice any issues.
Dental anomalies in dogs are relatively uncommon, but veterinary dentists are increasingly using clinically oriented approaches to categorize these disorders according to their etiopathogenesis. This is a crucial step in understanding and managing these conditions to preserve masticatory function while improving the appearance of your dog’s smile – even if with fake dog teeth.