“How many teeth do dogs have?” Wondering a question like this is quite normal for a dog owner. If you are also an owner of a pooch and being curious about his teeth, I’ve got you.
Here you will get to know every essential thing about how many teeth a dog has, when do the puppies start losing teeth, and how can you help them to improve their dental health?
How Many Teeth Do Dogs Have?
Generally, in your dog’s lifetime, you will get to see two sets of teeth. The first one will appear in the puppy stage which is known as deciduous teeth.
The second set will appear when your dog will be in his adult stage and it will be considered permanent teeth. This seems quite similar to humans, isn’t it?
Fun fact: Dogs have more teeth than humans in both sets.
- Puppy teeth
When puppies are born, they have no teeth at all. When a puppy touches the mark of 3 weeks of age, the eruption process of teeth begins. The deciduous teeth of your four-legged friend will start appearing. By the age of 3 to 4 months, all 28 teeth of your puppy will be there which will include incisors, canines, and premolars.
- Adult dog teeth
When your dog will reach the mark of 3 to 7 months of age, this is the time when he will get permanent teeth which are also known as secondary teeth. The total number of adult dog teeth will be 48. Yes! 10 extra teeth than adult humans.
Remember – There is a possibility that some dog breeds especially small ones may take much longer time than usual to develop their deciduous and permanent teeth.
You may also get to see retained teeth. It occurs when your puppy’s teeth don’t exfoliate on their own and stay in the mouth. This is a problem that can happen because of genetics and cause the abnormal growth of permanent teeth. Small dog breeds are at more risk, but still, it can happen to medium and large dog breeds too.
To treat retained teeth, you will have to seek out professional help. They will use a surgical procedure to remove these teeth and create space for the eruption of the permanent teeth.
What Are The Types of Dog Teeth?
Dogs have four types of teeth and each tooth has its own function and importance. Let’s take a deep into what these teeth are and how do they function.
Incisors are the small teeth that are located in the front part of your dog’s mouth. They help your dog to perform lots of functions such as grasping, nipping, biting, and grooming also.
The total number of incisors is 12 in adult dogs – 6 on the top and 6 on the bottom of the jaw.
Canines teeth are known as the longest teeth in dogs. They are located behind the incisors and are developed very well. These teeth help dogs in shredding and tearing the meat. They are also very helpful in holding a thing like a chew toy or bone.
The dogs have 4 canine teeth – 2 are located on the top and 2 on the bottom of the jaw.
Premolars are teeth located just behind the canines. These teeth help dogs to tear and chew their toys. Whenever you see your dog chewing something with the side of his mouth, that is the sign that he is taking the premolar teeth in use.
The total number of premolars is 16 in the adult dogs – 8 teeth on the top and 8 on the bottom.
Molars are located at the right back of the dog’s mouth. You will notice that they look slightly similar to the premolars. These teeth help a dog to grind its food properly which is very beneficial for digestion.
The total number of molars in an adult dog is 10 – 4 on the top and 6 on the bottom.
When Will My Puppy Start Losing Baby Teeth?
The teething of your puppy will begin at 3 weeks of age which will start with incisors and canines and then followed by the premolars. When your puppy will touch the mark of around 6 weeks of age, all 28 teeth will be present there.
At the age of around 12 weeks, your puppy may start losing his teeth, and permanent teeth will begin erupting. According to the VCA Hospital when a dog touches the mark of 6 months of age, all deciduous teeth have been fallen out, and all the permanent teeth are in.
Remember, at this stage, it is good to take your dog to the vet for a tooth checkup. It will help you assure that everything is going well and there are not any underlying issues.
What If My Adult Dog Start Losing His Permanent Teeth?
If an adult dog is losing its deciduous teeth, it’s a normal thing. But it turns out to be a serious problem when an adult dog starts losing teeth. In this case, you should definitely reach out to your vet for help.
Your dog can lose teeth for the following reasons:
Your sweet dog’s teeth can be lost due to a trauma that may occur because of chewing something, or there might be any other injury in the mouth.
To avoid this problem, you must avoid giving your dog things that are hard and can cause damage to the tooth.
- Periodontal Disease
If your dog has started losing his permanent teeth, there are high chances that he has developed periodontal disease. If you don’t provide proper dental care such as professional cleanings and brushing to your dog, this disease can cause decaying teeth and diseased gums.
Periodontal disease is avoidable, or at least risks can be decreased if proper dental care is taken.
- Tooth Decay
Generally, a dog’s teeth are more inclined to tooth decay. As we already know that a dog doesn’t use their mouth only for eating or drinking. They also chew and pick up random things which are not good for their teeth and can lead to tooth decay.
A dog’s tooth decay will be treated with a professional cleaning recommended by your vet.
How Can You Provide Proper Care To Your Dog’s Teeth?
Just like humans, dogs also need proper dental care to maintain healthy and strong teeth. Brushing your dog’s teeth is one of the most important tasks you can do for your dog. Make sure to pick up a brush and toothpaste that is specifically made for dogs. You can also use some toys and treats that are specially built for dogs to reduce bacteria in the mouth.
So, that was all about “how many teeth do dogs have?”. I hope you have got your answer here. Still have some doubts? Leave them in the comment section.