How Many Teeth Do Dogs Have
Most adult dogs have 42 permanent teeth. That’s a lot of teeth. Puppies are born without any teeth but the teeth are just below the surface of the gums, waiting to erupt, and they do so in just a few days. Puppies have 28 baby teeth, which will fall out over the next few months, as the adult teeth emerge.
What happens to the puppy teeth?
You may find a few of them in the house but your puppy will probably end up swallowing most of them as he eats his food. They are very small and he won’t notice them. They only come out when they are ready to, and when there is an adult tooth emerging to take the place of the baby tooth.
Do puppies teethe?
Oh, yes! This is one reason why puppies chew on everything. They start teething, and getting their adult teeth when they are about four months old and it can last until they are about 17 months old, when they get their last adult teeth. During this time they go through the same painful teething process that babies go through. Teething can hurt! Your puppy has adult teeth forming in his gum and trying to emerge. That’s why he chews on things, to try to find some relief.
You can help your puppy a lot by providing him with all kinds of things to chew on. He needs things with lots of different textures. Give him some things that are soft, things that are hard, and give him some things that are cold. Your puppy will appreciate chewing on some ice now and then to soothe his gums. You can also wet a clean wash cloth and freeze it for him, then let him chew on it. Keep a supply of these cloths in your freezer and you will make your puppy very happy. And, he’ll be far less likely to chew on your furniture and other possessions.
Do all dogs have the same number of teeth?
No, they don’t. Some breeds or individual dogs are born with some missing teeth. This is not usually anything to be concerned about, unless you intend to breed a dog. Dogs who are missing teeth should not usually be bred, unless you are a breeder and you know something about dental genetics. This is not usually a characteristic you want to pass on to the next generation unless a dog has some other outstanding characteristics.
What are “primitive” teeth?
A few breeds have what are known as a “primitive” mouth, instead of the mouth and teeth of the modern dog. They have long, thin, pointy teeth instead of flat incisors in front. Their teeth can often appear very crowded and may protrude, and these breeds can be prone to dental problems. The hairless Chinese Crested is one of these breeds.
What can you do to protect your dog’s teeth?
Veterinary dentists recommend that you brush your dog’s teeth regularly using a toothpaste and toothbrush for dogs. Dogs are susceptible to the same dental diseases that plague humans such as gingivitis, plaque, and tartar. Have your vet check your dog’s teeth when he goes for his annual physical. Your dog may need to have his teeth professionally cleaned by your vet at some point during his life.