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Signs of Strong Dental Health in Dogs

By Gina Carey. May 14, 2012 | See Comments

Signs of Strong Dental Health in Dogs

It is vital to make sure that your dog maintains great oral health. Learn what signs to look for here.

If your dog has a regular tooth care regime, then you are on track to scoring an A+ when it comes to your pet’s dental health. Excellent oral health can lead to longer lives in dogs and will save them from preventable pain and discomfort. When you examine your dog’s mouth, look for these signs that indicate strong teeth and gums.

Healthy Teeth

Dog teeth are typically white during puppyhood, and darken as dogs get older. Puppies start out with 28 baby teeth that fall out around six months, and are replaced with a total of 42 adult teeth. Healthy teeth are not chipped or cracked, and do not show signs of deterioration. Brown or yellow film by your dog’s gum line or visible deterioration are signs of poor dental health, and should be addressed before the buildup worsens.

Healthy Gums

Healthy dog gums should be firm, and can range in color from pink to black. Some dog gums are spotted, which is also normal. Healthy gums are never swollen or discolored. Puffy red or white sections on the gums are signs of periodontal disease.

Healthy Breath Odor

Dog breath isn’t known for being the freshest thing you’ll ever smell. All dogs have some amount of odor to their breath, so it’s normal to smell your pet’s breath when it yawns or breathes on you. Healthy dogs, however, won’t clear out a room with their stinky breath. If your pet’s breath changes or worsens, then it could be a sign of dental issues.

Healthy Tongues

Canine tongues vary in color from pink to blue-black to speckled. You will not find cysts or lumps on or under healthy dog tongues. If your dog’s tongue fades, changes color, or has ulcerations, it could be a sign of a larger problem such as lack of oxygen that is not likely due to dental health.

Healthy Dental Health Behaviors

Dogs with healthy teeth and gums will take part in normal activities that involve chewing without hesitation or sensitivity. Mealtime and eating will not be an issue for them, and they’ll seek out opportunities to chew on snacks and toys regularly. Dogs who struggle with eating, chew on one side of the mouth, show difficulty picking up food, or have noticeable change in chewing and eating behaviors may have oral health issues.

This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by,your veterinarian. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard or delay seeking professional advice due to what you may have read on our website.

 

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