Dog teeth have some similarities with human teeth. To name an example, our canine companions are diphyodont rather than either monophyodont or polyphyodont. This means that dogs have two successive sets of teeth. The first would be their deciduous teeth while the second would be their permanent teeth. For comparison, mice would be monophyodont because they have a single set of teeth while elephants would be polyphyodont because their teeth are replaced in a continual manner.
In any case, a puppy’s deciduous teeth start showing up about a couple of weeks after birth. After which, everything should have come in by eight to ten weeks’ time. In total, a puppy should have 28 deciduous teeth, which should be pointier than their permanent counterparts. This is useful because a puppy has weaker jaws than their full-grown self. As a result, the pointier deciduous teeth make it much easier for them to chew when they start eating solid food as well as otherwise using their teeth. Dogs grow up faster than humans. That means it should come as no surprise to learn that dogs also get their permanent teeth faster than humans. Generally speaking, the incisors will fall out at around four months of age, the canines will fall out at around five to six months of age, and then the premolars and molars will come in at around five to eight months of age. Different dogs can see considerable differences in this regard, not least because of their size as well as their dog breed. By the end, a full-grown dog should have 42 permanent teeth. If they have any deciduous teeth remaining, they are going to need to see a veterinarian who can do something about that. The most common solution is pulling the deciduous teeth, which explains why that is so important.
Moving on, those 42 permanent teeth can be divided up into the aforementioned four groups – incisors, canines, premolars, and molars. First, there should be 12 incisors, which should be divided up into six incisors on the top and six incisors on the bottom. These are the front teeth that dogs use for grooming themselves as well as tearing meat off of the bone. Second, there should be four canines, which might be more familiar to interested individuals as the two fangs that can be found on the top and the two fangs that can be found on the bottom. These teeth are good for punching into things as well as holding onto things. Third, there should be 16 premolars, which should be divided up into eight premolars on the top and eight premolars on the bottom. If interested individuals have ever seen a dog chewing something with the side of their mouth, that would be said dog using their premolars for their intended purpose. Fourth, there should be 10 molars. Curiously, there should be four of these flat teeth that can be found on the top plus six more that can be found on the bottom. Dog molars are used for much the same purposes as human molars, which is to say, a combination of chewing and grinding. Combined, that should add up to the 42 permanent teeth that were stated earlier.
Why Do You Need to Take Care of Your Dog’s Teeth?
Dogs are capable of living without their teeth. Both dogs and dog owners will need to put serious effort into adjusting to the dog’s new circumstances. To name an example, interested individuals will need extra measures to make sure that their dog can eat their dog food, whether by buying the right kind of dog food or using some kind of utensil to mash up the dog food after some warm water has been added to it. This process can be rather unpleasant. As such, it is better to make sure that the dog’s teeth are well-protected rather than run the risk of the dog losing their teeth. This is particularly true because losing their teeth tends to be the better option for a dog that has been put into such a position. After all, if anyone has ever experienced their own tooth problem, they will know that it can be agonizing. Something that can be even more disruptive than the dog being forced to make do without their teeth.
How Can You Take Care of Your Dog’s Teeth?
There are a number of things that interested individuals can do to take care of their dog’s teeth. For starters, it is very much possible for dog owners to brush their dog’s teeth. This can take a fair amount of effort, particularly since most dogs tend to be less than enthused by the prospect. However, it is possible for dog owners to train their dog into accepting it. Of course, the right tools and supplies can make this process much easier than otherwise possible. For example, interested individuals might want to get a dog toothbrush that fits over their fingertip, which can be much more dexterous than a standard toothbrush. Similarly, they should definitely get dog toothpaste rather than use human toothpaste. One, dog toothpaste can come in flavors that are pleasant for dogs. Two, dog toothpaste won’t be made using anything that can be problematic for dogs. If dog owners have any concerns, they should definitely consider consulting their veterinarian, who should be a valuable source of trustworthy information about this as well as other issues. Besides this, there are other suggestions that can prove to be useful for a dog’s dental health as well. There are dog tooth wipes that can be easier to use than dog toothbrushes. These can’t reach all of the nooks and crannies in a dog’s mouth. Even so, dog tooth wipes are still much better than nothing at all. Similarly, dog chews and dog dental treats can be very useful as well, particularly since they tend to be much better-received by the dogs themselves. On top of these, there is the option of getting professional teeth cleanings for a dog, which are the most expensive option but also the most effective option. As a bonus, these are also a chance for the veterinarian to see if there are any dental health problems developing that need to be taken care of.