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Help! My Senior Dog is Losing Teeth

Scruffy dog outdoors with his mouth open as if panting

It’s not uncommon for senior dogs to lose their teeth. When this happens, your dog will need special dental care and a different diet to help him/her maintain good health. In this article, we will discuss about tooth loss in older dogs and learn how its effects your pet. We’ll also provide some tips on what you can do if your senior dog is losing teeth.

Why is My Senior Dog Losing Teeth?

Puppies lose teeth naturally. However, if your adult dog is losing teeth, it could well be a sign of a serious problem. Read on to find out what it is!

Periodontal Disease

Gloved hands holding open an old dog mouth to reveal missing and damaged teeth.

Senior canines are quite vulnerable to this bacterial infection that grows between the gum and the tooth. It causes the gums to recede that will ultimately speed up the buildup of tartar on a pup’s teeth. If left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to pain and eventually tooth loss. Hence, it’s important to clean your dog’s teeth every day and take them to the vet for necessary dental care.

Toe Grips mention that you must brush the teeth of your senior dog (with dog toothpaste) twice a week. It is a great way to remove plaque from your pup’s mouth before it turns into tartar. In addition to brushing your dog’s teeth, you can also take them to a vet for professional cleaning at least once every year.

Cleaning your dog’s teeth is important to keep them healthy. If you’re not fond of brushing your pup’s teeth with a regular toothbrush, you can also consider an electric toothbrush. It is designed specifically for canines and will make your job a lot easier.

Stages of Periodontal Disease

Pit bull against a blue background, smiling
  • Gingivitis – This is the first stage of periodontal disease and is characterized by the inflammation of the gums. Your dog may have bad breath due to mouth odor, drooling, or swollen (and red) gums. Gingivitis irritates the gum tissue and separates the teeth from the bone.
  • Pockets – In this stage, there are gaps in the jaw that will allow for bacteria to grow. They will break down blood cells and tissue around the teeth. The deeper the pockets between teeth, the more severe periodontitis can become.
  • Bone Loss – This is the third stage of periodontal disease. It is marked by the removal of bone from your pup’s jaw. Bone loss in canines is different from tooth decay in humans because the latter happens much slower. In dogs, bone loss can lead to pain, loose teeth, and problems with chewing or swallowing.
  • Extraction – As the disease grows, your pooch will ultimately need extraction to prevent the spread of infection. This is the stage at which your senior dog starts losing teeth. Some dogs may develop facial swelling due to an abscess, or brain damage if the condition is left untreated.
  • Receding Gums – This is the final stage of bone loss and occurs when the jawbone begins to recede. It will make it difficult for your dog’s teeth to come together properly as he bites down. Therefore, lack of interest in eating and weight loss will also be observed.

Hard Treats

Rotweiller chewing on a bone

Dogs are adorable, and we love to give them treats. However, many dog owners don’t realize that hard treats can be very damaging to their dog’s teeth. Not only do they wear down the enamel, but these treats can also cause other dental problems, including periodontal disease.

It’s important to provide your dog with a healthy diet that includes plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. You can also include softer treats that won’t damage their teeth. If you do give your dog hard treats, make sure to monitor their oral health. Likewise, take them to the vet for regular dental checkups. If you notice any signs of dental problems, make sure to schedule an appointment with your vet.

What to Do if My Senior Dog is Losing Teeth?

Scruggy old Dachshung laying down.

You have many options when it comes to brushing your dog’s teeth. You could ask for help from your vet or consider purchasing canine toothpaste and an electric toothbrush. Another option is to use any type of food-grade soft brush meant specifically for pets’ teeth. And if all else fails, try giving them treats specifically made to clean their teeth between meals.

Proper cleaning of your dogs’ teeth will prevent periodontal disease and give them a fresher breath while preventing any discomfort. Senior dogs more prone to gum disease and it can be a major issue for them. Proper dental health is critical for them because it can lead to several other conditions. If your senior dog is losing teeth, here are a few things you can do to help.

  • Make sure they’re eating a diet that is soft and easy to chew.
  • Give them plenty of water to drink.
  • Take them to the vet for regular checkups.
  • Brush their teeth regularly even if they’re not losing teeth.
  • Supplement their diet with healthy snacks, like carrots or apples.
  • Use a dog toothpaste to help protect against tooth decay.

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