Dog tooth extraction: what to expect

If your dog is suffering from dental problems, you might be wondering about tooth extraction. Today our Monroe vet team talks about why your dog might need the procedure, what to expect, and recovery. 

What is a pet dental extraction?

A tooth extraction is when all or part of a pet's tooth is surgically removed by a veterinarian. Extractions can go as deep as the roots or might focus on removing the dental crown (the part of the tooth which is visible above the gums)

Why Could My Dog Need Tooth Extraction?

If a tooth is damaged beyond repair, it must be removed in order to prevent infection and pain caused by the dead tooth. Dog and cat tooth extractions are often required for the animal to live pain-free and achieve optimal oral health.

What Happens During A Tooth Extraction Procedure?

Teeth all are held into our mouths by roots - in dogs, as many as three roots can be holding an individual tooth. To correctly and completely extract a tooth, all roots must be removed.

Before your dog's dental procedure begins, they will be put under anesthesia to ensure they feel no discomfort during the surgery. Our veterinarians practice stringent surgical protocols when operating on our patients.

In order to check the health of the roots of your dog's teeth, the vet might have to take an x-ray or perform a CT scan. After, to extract large teeth (those with multiple roots), a high-speed dental drill is used to split so that each fragment of the tooth has only one root attached to it. Smaller teeth that have one root can be completely removed without this extra step.

Potential Tooth Extraction Complications

There are rarely complications stemming from pet tooth extractions. Those complications which do occur are usually caused by a handful of issues, such as the remnants of removed teeth, dental cavities which have not fully healed, and damage to the jaw bone. 

Recovery After a Dog Tooth Extraction

After your dog's procedure is complete, recovery is often relatively fast. You should be able to bring your pet home on the same day as the procedure. Although there may be small amounts of blood in your dog's saliva, significant bleeding means you should contact a vet immediately. Our Monroe vets advise avoiding hard food for a while their new oral cavities heal. If your pet eats primarily hard kibble, you can soften it in water before serving; for similar reasons, it is advisable that you withhold from playing tug-of-war until your dog is fully recovered.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

If you are concerned your dog may require a dental extraction or have other veterinary oral health concerns, contact our Monroe vets to schedule an appointment.