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Symptoms of Dog Gum and Tooth Problems

By Gina Carey. May 14, 2012 | See Comments

Symptoms of Dog Gum and Tooth Problems

Small gum and tooth problems can lead to much bigger problems for your pet if they are not addressed in a timely matter. Learn the symptoms of these problems here.

Dog gum and tooth problems can lead to serious issues for your pet if left unattended. Starting as puppies, dogs should undergo a regular dental regime to prevent tooth decay, periodontal disease, and in extreme cases, heart, liver, and kidney disease.

Prevention is the best way to treat against these issues, because symptoms may not show up for years. Dogs cannot communicate the pain and discomfort they feel when they develop oral health problems, so checking your pet for these six symptoms of serious tooth and gum issues is recommended.

1. Halitosis

One of the most evident sign of canine oral health issues is a case of rank breath. Though your dog’s normal breath is hardly fresh and minty, if you notice a stronger odor that does not go away, then it could be a case of halitosis. Halitosis is typically caused by the growth of odor-producing bacteria in your dog’s mouth and gut, and should be treated immediately.

2. Noticeable tartar buildup

Like humans, dogs need to scrub bacteria off their teeth and gums or suffer the consequences of plaque buildup. Tartar appears as a yellow or brown substance on the teeth, and can be removed by a combination of regular brushing, friction from chew toys, and dental cleanings from your vet.

3. Inflamed gums

Healthy dog gums should be firm and should not show signs of discoloration. Gums that are swollen or bleeding indicate serious symptoms of gum disease. Check your dog’s gum line for swelling, tumors, and objects that may be lodged in the gums.

4. Changes in saliva

In some cases, dogs with oral health issues may begin to drool excessively. You should also look out for changes in your dog’s saliva (i.e. ropey saliva), and any cases of blood in the saliva or blood left on dog chew toys.

5. Changes on the tongue

A dog’s tongue may begin to change color or fade if there are oral health issues present. Look out for cysts, ulcerations, and lumps on or under the tongue as well.

6. Tooth decay

When you examine your pet’s mouth, look for signs of decaying, loose, or cracked teeth. You may also see parts of the tooth root exposed if gum disease is causing your pet’s gumline to recede.

Take a look at what healthy adult dog teeth look like.

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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