fractured teeth in dogs

What are Fractured Teeth in Dogs?

What is it?

Fractured teeth in dogs occur when the tooth is broken or cracked due to trauma or decay. This can lead to pain, discomfort, and difficulty eating or drinking. Fractured teeth can occur in any dog breed and at any age.

How is it Treated?

The treatment of fractured teeth in dogs depends on the severity and location of the fracture. Minor fractures may be managed through regular dental cleanings and careful monitoring. More severe fractures may require extraction or other dental procedures to prevent infection and alleviate pain.

Breed Predispositions

Greyhounds Chihuahuas Miniature Poodles Yorkshire Terriers Dachshunds Toy Poodles Cavalier King Charles Spaniels Jack Russell Terriers Maltese Shetland Sheepdogs


During a lively game of fetch at the local dog park, Jack couldn’t help but admire his energetic German Shepherd, Thor, as he enthusiastically chased after the ball. As the sun began to set, they headed home, both tired but content. As Jack refilled Thor’s water bowl, he noticed a tiny piece of what appeared to be a tooth. Alarmed, he checked Thor’s mouth and discovered a fractured tooth, causing him concern for his beloved companion’s well-being.

Fractured teeth are small pieces of bone that break off inside a dog’s mouth. They usually occur when a dog bites hard on another animal or object.

They’re not painful unless the dog continues to chew at them. The most common cause of fractured teeth is excessive chewing. But sometimes, a dog may bite down too hard on its tongue or cheek.

Because fractured teeth are often found during routine oral exams, many veterinarians recommend examining your pet every six months. This allows your vet to catch any problems early before they become serious.

Types of Fractured Teeth in Dogs

Tooth fractures are common in dogs. They can cause severe pain and discomfort, especially when chewing. Here are the three types of tooth fractures in dogs:

  1. Pulp exposure – The pulp chamber becomes exposed through a crack in the enamel. This injury usually occurs when a dog bites hard enough to break the enamel.
  2. Enamel fracture – The enamel cracks, exposing the dentin. This injury typically results from the excessive force being applied to the teeth during play.
  3. Dentinal fracture – The dentine breaks away from the root surface. This type of injury often happens when a dog chews down on its teeth.

Causes of a Fractured Teeth in Dogs

“Fractures of the enamel,” says Dr. Brian K. Johnson, DMD, MS, DACBN, DACOI, “are usually caused by external trauma.” He explains that enamel is the hardest substance found in the body. “Enamel is very brittle, and it breaks easily under stress. So when you bite down hard enough, you can crack it.”

The most common cause of enamel fracture is a dog’s aggressive behavior. For example, if a dog bites another animal, he may accidentally damage his tooth enamel. Another reason for enamel fractures is excessive playtime. For example, a playful puppy might chew on toys too roughly, resulting in broken teeth.

If a dog chews on something sharp like a stick or bone, he could injure himself. Unfortunately, this frequently happens with puppies, especially those raised around cats. They learn how to use their teeth to eat cat food and bones, and they don’t always know how to control their jaws. As a result, they sometimes cut themselves.

Causes of a Fractured Teeth in Dogs

Dr. Johnson adds, “Sometimes, a dog gnaws on a tree limb or fence post, causing a small chip in the enamel.” Sometimes, a dog may swallow or inhale a foreign object, such as gravel or stone. Once lodged inside the throat, the thing causes irritation and inflammation, leading to infection. Eventually, the object becomes trapped, and the dog begins to choke. His mouth fills up with saliva, and the pressure builds. Finally, the thing popped out, and the dog stopped.

A third possible cause of fractured teeth is dental disease. “When bacteria build up inside the mouth, they produce acids that erode the enamel,” Dr. Johnson says. “This process is called caries or decay. Sometimes, the decay spreads into the pulp chamber. If left untreated, the pulp cavity becomes infected, and the nerve endings die off.”

Another way to destroy healthy canine tooth structure is through overexertion during exercise. Running, jumping, playing rough games, and swimming can put a lot of strain on the jaw muscles,” Dr. Johnson warns. “If you’re doing any of these activities, frequently rest to prevent injury.”

Finally, certain diseases can affect a dog’s infected teeth. For example, hypothyroidism can weaken the jaw muscles, making them susceptible to injury. In addition, hyperadrenocorticism can lead to hyperactivity of the salivary glands, which produce excess saliva. Saliva contains enzymes that soften the enamel, making it easier to break.

fractured teeth in dogs

Affected Breeds

Brachycephalic breeds such as pugs, bulldogs, French bulldogs, Shih Tzu, and Boston terriers are susceptible to complicated fractures of the upper incisors because of their short snouts. This makes it difficult for them to chew food properly and causes them to develop dental problems. These breeds are also prone to respiratory issues due to their narrow nasal passages. They often suffer from heat stroke during exercise and require constant attention.

Symptoms of Fractured Teeth in Dogs

Scrutinizing him is the best way to tell if your dog has a broken tooth. Look for swollen gums, pus around the gum line, and tenderness. A fractured tooth usually causes pain when the dog bites down on something. This is why he refuses to chew on the affected side. In addition, your dog will probably show other signs of discomfort or pain, such as excessive drooling, salivation, and even restlessness.

If you find a cracked tooth, clean it gently with warm water and baking soda. Then apply hydrogen peroxide or iodine to help stop the infection. If there is still pain, take your dog to the veterinarian.

Other clinical signs include bleeding gums, loose teeth, swollen jaw, and chewing pain. These symptoms may be accompanied by fever, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, depression, and loss of appetite.

Diagnosis of Fractured Canine Teeth

To diagnose this condition, veterinarians use x-rays to determine whether there is any damage to the bone beneath the tooth’s enamel layer. They also examine the gums and surrounding soft tissues to identify signs of inflammation.

X-ray images help determine whether a canine tooth requires surgical extraction or can be preserved. A radiograph is used to detect fractures, abscesses, cysts, tumors, and infections. Radiographs are helpful because they allow us to see what we cannot feel. They provide information about the size, shape, location, and number of infected teeth.

If the fracture extends through the root canal, the veterinarian will remove the damaged portion of the tooth and fill the space with dental cement. The dog will need regular visits to monitor progress until the tooth heals completely.

Treatment Options for Fractured Canine Teeth

Treatment Options for Fractured Canine Teeth

Extraction or root canal therapy is the most common option when treating a fractured canine. Root canal treatment aims to preserve the tooth while extracting the diseased portion of the tooth. This allows the owners to keep the tooth and avoid replacing it. While many believe root canal therapy is painful, studies show it is less painful than extraction.

Root canal therapy is often recommended for cases where the pulp chamber becomes infected or decayed. Root canal treatment in dogs is effective at least 95 percent of the time.

If the pulp space becomes infected, oral bacteria develop and cause swelling. Inflammation causes the nerves to become inflamed and irritated. In some cases, the nerve endings die off completely. Without proper care, the infection spreads into the surrounding soft tissues and leads to pain.

Most veterinarians are trained in tooth extraction. However, only a few are trained to do root canals. To ensure success, you must seek a veterinary professional specializing in both procedures.

Prevention of Fractured Teeth in Dogs

If you notice cracks in your dog’s teeth, you must immediately take him to the vet. While some shots aren’t severe, others can lead to painful infections and tooth loss. Here are five things you can do to help keep your dog’s healthy teeth.

  • Brush Your Dog’s Teeth Regularly

Brushing his teeth regularly is the best way to keep your dog’s mouth healthy. Brushing removes plaque and tartar buildup, which can cause gum disease and tooth decay. You can use a canine or a human toothbrush designed specifically for dogs. Make sure to brush every surface of your dog’s mouth, including the tongue and gums.

  • Feed Healthy Food

Your dog needs a balanced diet to maintain strong teeth and good overall health. Choose foods high in calcium and phosphorus, such as canned salmon, chicken liver treats, and cooked eggshells. Avoid foods that contain sugar, especially those that come in hard candy form, because they can damage enamel over time.

  • Keep Toys Clean

Toys can harbor bacteria that can cause infection in your dog’s toothing. Wash toys frequently in hot water and dry them thoroughly. Store toys away from your dog’s bedding and food bowls. Also, make sure to clean his toys daily.

  • Limit Snacks

Snacking between meals can contribute to tooth decay. Instead, feed your dog small amounts of nutritious snacks throughout the day. For example, give him pieces of cheese, rawhide chews, or frozen fruit treats.

  • Take Care When Playing Rough

Playing too roughly with your dog can injure his teeth. So never hit, bite, or wrestle with your dog. Instead, play gently and carefully, so you don’t risk damaging his teeth.

Frequently Asked Questions

The price depends on how long the tooth is broken, whether it is cracked or chipped, and if there is any damage to the surrounding tissue. If the tooth is loose, then you might need to remove it. Professional vets should do this because they know what tools to use and how to handle the situation safely. The price also depends on where you live. In some places, it costs less than $50; in others, it could cost up to $200.

The answer depends on how much damage was done to the tooth. If there were no fractures, the tooth could heal itself. However, the tooth cannot heal itself if there is extensive damage to the tooth, such as when it is cracked or broken into pieces. The damaged area must be removed before the tooth can heal.

A dog’s tooth can be replaced. A dentist can do this. The procedure takes place in two stages. First, the tooth must be removed from the mouth. Then, the tooth is prepared to fit into the gum tissue. Finally, the new tooth is inserted into its proper position.

Replacing a canine tooth is similar to the method used to remove a baby tooth. However, because dogs’ teeth grow continuously throughout their lives, they require special care. Your pet should see a veterinarian at least once every six months. Contact your vet immediately if you notice any changes in your dog’s behavior or if he seems uncomfortable chewing.

The answer is yes! A dog can live with a fractured canine tooth. However, he might get ill if you don’t treat your dog’s teeth properly. If your dog gets sick because of his teeth, you should immediately take him to a vet.

Dogs’ teeth break easily when they chew on complex objects like bones, rocks, sticks, etc. If your dog chews on these things, he could damage his teeth. You should take him to the vet if you notice any signs of tooth decay or loose teeth.

No, they do not need to be removed. However, fractured dog teeth can sometimes benefit from antibiotics or a topical ointment to help repair the tooth and relieve the pain caused by the fracture.

If your dog has a cracked tooth, the best thing to do is take them to the vet. A veterinarian can remove and fix the tooth, so it doesn’t break again.

Yes, a fractured tooth can be saved if the fracture is clean and the surrounding gum tissues are healthy. The veterinarian may need to remove the fragments of bone from inside the tooth using an oral surgical instrument known as a curette or scalpel. Then they will place a temporary restoration on top of the broken tooth and use dental cement to hold it until your dog’s new teeth come in (usually between eight and twelve weeks).

A cracked dog tooth is not a crisis, but it may require professional attention if the crack extends into the tooth’s root or if there is any sign of infection.

A broken tooth is painful for a dog. Depending on the severity, it can cause severe pain and restrict movement. If left untreated, a fractured tooth may require surgery to fix.

It is essential to consult your veterinarian first, as some dogs do not require teeth pulled, and others may need a different procedure. If you are unfamiliar with the signs that your dog’s teeth might need to be removed or have other questions about this process, please contact our office for more information.

Dogs can break teeth on bones, but this is not common. It depends on the size and shape of the bone and whether it’s properly fitted into the jaw.

A broken tooth in a dog can cause pain and difficulty eating, but most dogs can live with the tooth if it is treated quickly. However, if the tooth is left untreated, it may need removal.

Some dogs chew on hard surfaces such as bones or wood, damaging their teeth. Other ways dogs break their teeth include being hit in the face with a ball or stick, getting caught in something they cannot escape, and biting down too hard on something.

You can do a few things to help keep your dog’s teeth healthy and avoid fracturing them: Keep their food fresh. If possible, feed them fresh, raw foods instead of processed ones. This will help reduce the amount of sugar in their diet and lessens the chances that they’ll eat anything that could cause tooth decay or gum inflammation. Also, don’t overfeed your dog food.

Good oral health is essential for your pet because it can help prevent cavities, gum disease, and other dental issues. It can also help keep your pet’s breath fresh and healthy.

Disclaimer: The information provided on this veterinary website is intended for general educational purposes only and should not be considered as a substitute for professional veterinary advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always consult a licensed veterinarian for any concerns or questions regarding the health and well-being of your pet. This website does not claim to cover every possible situation or provide exhaustive knowledge on the subjects presented. The owners and contributors of this website are not responsible for any harm or loss that may result from the use or misuse of the information provided herein.

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