Auto Draft is a tiny breed of dog known for being energetic and having a bold personality. These dogs are commonly referred to as Chihuahuas due to their distinct appearance. Despite their small

Toothy Troubles: Dog Breeds With Dental Problems


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Ever noticed your furry friend giving you a grin that’s, well, a little less than pearly white? If you’re nodding along, you’re definitely not alone. Doggie dental problems are common among all pups, but certain dog breeds are more likely to have dog teeth problems than others.

From the tiny, adorable Chihuahua to the lovably squishable Bulldog, some pups are more prone to dental dilemmas that can affect their health and happiness. This blog post rounds up the dog breeds that may be more predisposed to dental problems than others.

A small dog with a dental problem and a pink toothbrush in its mouth.

Small dogs with dental problems

Due to their diminutive size, smaller dogs may be more prone to dental problems than larger dogs. Here are some of the breeds known to suffer from teeth troubles:

  • Yorkshire Terrier: Their small mouths can lead to crowded teeth, which increases the risk of periodontal disease.
  • Chihuahua: Similar to Yorkies, Chihuahuas often suffer from dental issues due to overcrowded teeth in a small jaw space.
  • Dachshund: Prone to gum and periodontal diseases due to their long, narrow jaws that can cause teeth crowding.

Brachycephalic dogs with dental problems

Cute as they are, the breeding process that gives brachycephalic breeds their signature flat faces also leads to various problems. From breathing to spinal problems, brachycephalic breeds don’t have it easy. Here are brachy breeds that are more likely than many others to struggle with their teeth:

  • Pugs: Because of the Pug‘s short nose and flat face shape, their teeth are often misaligned or crowded, leading to increased risk of periodontal disease.
  • Bulldogs: Similar to Pugs, Bulldogs have a compressed jaw structure, resulting in dental overcrowding and a higher likelihood of dental issues.
  • Shih Tzu: Their brachycephalic nature contributes to teeth crowding, making them more susceptible to dental diseases.

Toy dogs with dental problems

Toy breeds have small mouths, but their teeth? Not so much smaller. This mismatch means their teeth can get crowded, leading to plaque build-up and dental disease.

  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel: This breed is prone to periodontal disease due to their small mouth causing overcrowded teeth.
  • Pomeranian: Their small size and dense fur can sometimes obscure symptoms of dental issues, and they are prone to tooth decay and loss.

Breeds with unique dental anomalies

Greyhounds are among the breeds with dog dental problems too, which may be partly due to genetics and partly due to their diet and mouth structure.

As the Greyhound Welfare & Integrity Commission says, “Greyhounds can have a genetic predisposition to periodontitis. This means that in some genetic lines, the greyhound’s own immune system does not cope well with gum disease and extra inflammation adds to the pain and swelling associated with periodontitis. These dogs have very painful mouths, swollen gums and lips.”

Two greyhounds standing next to each other, showcasing their healthy teeth.

What to do if you parent one of these breeds?

With that said, what do you do if your pup is on the list of dogs with teeth troubles? You focus on preventive care! This is crucial for all dogs, but especially for these breeds.

Keeping your dog’s teeth shiny and healthy is totally doable with a few smart moves. Here’s the lowdown on how to keep those pearly whites in tip-top shape…

Brushing is your new best friend

Yes, it might sound a bit odd at first, brushing your dog’s teeth, but think of it as bonding time! Grab a dog-friendly toothbrush and some tasty dog toothpaste (chicken flavour, anyone?), and gently make it a part of your daily routine. Your furry pal might be a bit puzzled at first, but they’ll get the hang of it. Aim for daily, but a few times a week is better than nothing.

If you want to give your pet a proper tooth cleaning regime, read our guide on dog teeth cleaning.

Vet visits are cool

Just like us, dogs need professional cleanings too. Chat with your vet about scheduling regular dental check-ups and cleanings. They have the tools and know-how to get rid of the nasty plaque and tartar that can build up over time and land you with a dog with dental problems.

PS: Did you know that dog braces are a real thing? Read about how they help maintain good dog dental health.

Keep an eye out

Stay vigilant for any signs that something’s off. Bad breath, trouble munching on their favourite toy, or any unusual drooling? These could be your dog’s way of saying, “Hey, I need a little help here!”

Chew on this

Invest in some dental chews or toys designed specifically for dental health. Not only do they help clean those chompers as your dog chews, but they’re also a great way to keep them entertained.

Food for thought

Did you know certain dog foods are formulated to help keep teeth clean? It’s true! Ask your vet for recommendations on the best diet to support your dog’s dental health and help them avoid issues like gingivitis.

The power of prevention

Regularly checking your dog’s mouth and being proactive can save you and your dog with dental problems from future troubles. Think of it as keeping ahead of the game.

When in doubt, check it out

If something seems off, don’t wait. Whether it’s a weird smell coming from their mouth or they’re not as keen on chewing their toys, getting it checked out by a vet sooner rather than later is always the best bet.

A person is providing a dental check-up for a dog, examining its teeth.

Pet dental insurance for dog dental problems

In New Zealand 70% of pets over the age of three suffer from dental diseases. That’s nothing to sneeze at and, thankfully, there’s no need to with pet dental insurance.

PD Insurance’s Deluxe dog insurance plan includes covers treatment for a range of dog teeth issues. For example, tooth removal to combat overcrowding from baby teeth, gum disease, and abscesses.

Start today and you’ll get one or months of FREE dog insurance. Click below to get a quote.

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