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Canine Tooth Infection

Canine Tooth Infection

We all suffer dental infections at some or the other points of our life. But imagine your canine pet which is unable to speak out about its dental problems and suffering severe pain. Here is a detailed guide to help you understand and treat your dog's tooth infections.
Anuja Marathe Kanhere
Dogs are man's best friends which makes us all the more responsible for ensuring their health and hygiene. Just like all human beings, dogs too are highly susceptible to painful tooth aches and bleeding gums. If you own a dog or plan to adopt one, it is essential to understand this problem and treat it on timely basis.

Common Dog Tooth Infections

This infection affects your dog's gums. Affected gums usually appear redder than usual. If left untreated the gums seem to harden and your dog is likely to lose its teeth. Often gingivitis develops more complicated gum problems like mouth ulcers amongst dogs. Take your dog to a vet if the dog is experiencing pain while eating. Dogs are likely to get bleeding gums accompanied by a persistent stench in their breath during gingivitis.

Periodontal Disease
This problem results out of bacterial infection to the gums that hold the dog's teeth into position. An aggrieved problem can loosen the teeth and they fall out easily. Take your dog to the vet if you notice your dog's gums bleeding. Also, there is noticeable accumulation of black and brown colored tartar on surface of your dog's teeth.

Carnissal Tooth Abscess
Your dog's carnissal tooth in its upper jaw, is highly susceptible to infections. This tooth has three roots and the infection spreads quickly to the jawbone creating a severe infection and visible facial injury under the dog's eye. Take your dog to a vet if its mouth bleeds incessantly. Your pet may also refuse food due to severe dental pain.

This refers to hardened plague deposits in the dog's mouth. Calculus is most commonly found around the premolars and molars of lower jaw and carnissal teeth of upper jaw.

Causes of Dog's Tooth Infections

One of the most common cause behind a dog's-tooth infection is negligence on part of its owner. Poor maintenance of dog's dental hygiene, irregular appointments with vets for dog's checkup and provision of improper food to the dog are some of the top reasons for dog's-tooth infections.

However, there are some other factors that are responsible for this problem. They are as below:
  • Severe facial injury or facial fracture
  • Bacterial and viral infections
  • Embedding of foreign material between teeth
  • Pus accumulation
  • Irregular cleaning of dog's teeth
  • Overcrowded teeth
  • Chipped teeth
  • Odontoclastic resorptive lesions
  • Exposed roots of teeth
Symptoms of Dog's Tooth Infections

If you happen to be clueless about how to identify your dog's-tooth infection, then I have compiled here a list for your easy reference. Some of the common symptoms are:
  • Black and brown colored tartar layer on teeth
  • Unnatural growling and howling
  • Loss of appetite
  • Excessive drooling
  • Reddening of gums
  • Moving teeth
  • Swelling in gums and face
  • Painful and tender gums
  • Bleeding gums
  • Irritable and aggressive behavior
  • Lack of interest in usual playful activities
  • Dogs tend to touch their face with paws when in pain
  • Stench in dog's breath
Treating Dog's Tooth Infections

If you observe any of the above symptoms in your dog, then do not delay a visit to its vet. The dog usually gets very aggressive when in pain. As a result, the vet may need to administer general anesthesia to check its teeth for infections. If the problem is very severe, the vets usually prefer to surgically remove the affected tooth. At times, surgery is needed to help heal any facial or gum injury. It involves draining of pus from the affected area.

If however, the dog is suffering a milder infection then the vet may clean the teeth to remove traces of accumulated tartar or foreign materials between the teeth. Usually an antibiotic is prescribed to control the pain and reduce swellings, if any. Use of a special toothbrush and flavored toothpaste for cleaning your dog's teeth is recommended. It helps keep infections and growth of plaque under check. Nowadays, special dog mouthwashes are available in the market.

Preventing Dog's Tooth Infections

It is true that prevention is always better than cure. Additionally, it helps to keep your pet healthy and happy. It saves a lot of expenditure on dental surgery on your dog too. Some common preventive measures to keep dog's-tooth infections at bay are:
  • Avoid feeding your dog any treat foods.
  • Use rubber and nylon chew toys.
  • Provide a healthy diet of hard and coarse food.
  • Follow all necessary dental care precautions.
  • Take your dog to the vet for teeth cleaning without fail.
The equation is very simple. If your dog has healthy teeth, then it has a good appetite. If it has a good appetite, then it has lesser health problems. If it has lesser health problems, then it will live longer. And wouldn't you want your dear pet to be your companion for a really long time? I am sure that you will now be more careful about your canine friend.