When Should A Dog Or Cat’s Tooth Be Extracted?

dog cat dental xrays

Sometimes when a tooth needs removal, there’s plenty of time to explain why. However, most of the time, you get a hurried phone call while your dog or cat is asleep. There’s really nothing you can do but trust us.

Let’s pull back the curtain. Here I want to show you, using the latest best practice guidelines, how vets decide when a tooth should be extracted (never pulled), and what your choices are.

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Tooth Extractions In Dogs & Cats: Recovery & Cost

broken carnassial tooth

The tooth pictured here is fractured. Ignore the black gums, which are normal in dogs, and focus on the dental probe which is in the exposed (and dead) pulp cavity. It’s infected and needs removal.

It’s stressful knowing a dog or cat might lose teeth. The main worry is “how will they eat?” When it happens it’s never as bad as feared.

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Help! My Dog Has Retained Puppy Teeth

Dog retained puppy teeth

The key to a dog’s teeth developing properly is that it isn’t just programming. Sure, their structure and growth are genetic, but a tooth’s final position is dictated by the teeth around it.

When it works well, each tooth finds the gap it needs and they all end up being perfectly spaced. But what you see above is what happens when there are extra teeth in the way. These are persistent deciduous teeth.

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Help! My Dog Has A Lump On The Face

dog face lump

Dogs can get all kinds of lumps and bumps, some serious, some not. That’s why I’ve previously written a guide to dog skin lumps with pictures. Just click on the picture to visit.

lumps on dogs
A gallery of dog lumps

However, there’s one very particular swelling that I haven’t talked about even though it’s important, common and easy to recognise.

It’s the tooth root abscess.

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Overgrown Rabbit Teeth: Trimming vs Removal

rabbit incisor malocclusion

Have a look at the rabbit’s teeth in the picture above. What you can see are the lower incisors coming out of the mouth and almost touching the nose. What you can’t see are the upper incisors curling inside the mouth in a similar way.

Much further and any one of them will create a painful wound and prevent eating. Horrible! Why this happens is due to a fact that surprisingly few rabbit owners know.

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Getting Cats To Eat Raw Chicken Necks

cat raw chicken

Let me tell you a story that shows what we’re up against.

I met a very perplexed feral cat researcher recently. In his study area the cats generally hunt and eat one common mammal. However, suddenly the population of that species crashed.

There were lots of other tasty critters still hopping around, some of which look nearly the same. Despite this, the cats began to starve.

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Common Problems Of Dogs, Cats, Rabbits & Chickens

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