Dog Loose Tooth Reddit Treatment

Just like humans, dogs can suffer from loose or wobbly teeth as they age. A dog’s loose tooth can be caused by periodontal disease, trauma or injury, or simply be a baby tooth that hasn’t fallen out yet.

While a loose puppy tooth that falls out is normal, a permanent adult tooth that becomes loose or falls out can indicate a serious health problem. Leaving loose teeth untreated in dogs can lead to gum infections, bone loss, fractures, and tooth loss. That’s why it’s important to have a veterinarian examine any loose tooth in your dog.

This article will provide an overview of the signs, causes, dangers, and treatment options for dogs with loose teeth. With proper treatment and care, dogs can recover well from loose tooth issues.

Signs of a Loose Tooth

Some common signs that your dog may have a loose tooth include:

  • Visible wobbling of the tooth when the dog yawns or chews on a toy
  • Blood on their toys or food after playing or eating
  • Reluctance or avoidance of hard food or chew toys
  • Excessive drooling or pawing at their mouth
  • Bad breath or oral odor
  • Bleeding from the gums around the loose tooth
  • Swelling around the tooth or jaw
  • Nasal discharge or sneezing (if a canine tooth is affected)

If you notice any of these signs, inspect your dog’s mouth carefully for loose teeth. Look for reddened, inflamed, or receding gums as well. It’s important to have your vet examine any loose teeth as soon as possible.

Causes of Loose Teeth

There are several potential causes of loose teeth in dogs:

Periodontal Disease: Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is one of the most common causes of loose teeth in dogs. Periodontal disease happens when plaque and tartar buildup leads to inflammation and receding gums. This eventually destroys the tissues that hold the teeth in place, leading to loose and damaged teeth (Source).

Injury or Trauma: An injury to the mouth, such as being hit by a hard object like a ball or stick, can lead to damaged teeth and looseness. Fractures in the jawbone from an injury can also cause loosening (Source).

Genetics: Some breeds are genetically prone to periodontal disease and loose teeth, including small dog breeds like Chihuahuas and Yorkshire Terriers. The shape and spacing of a dog’s teeth can increase risk (Source).

Old Age: As dogs age, their teeth are more likely to become loose and fall out due to natural wear and tear over time. The tissues holding the teeth also weaken with age (Source).

Dangers of Untreated Loose Teeth

Leaving a loose tooth untreated in dogs can lead to several serious health issues, including:

Pain – A loose tooth will likely become increasingly painful as it deteriorates further. The tooth may ache constantly or throb when chewing. This can make eating difficult for the dog.

Infection – Bacteria can more easily enter the socket of a loose tooth and cause infection of the tooth and surrounding gum tissue, known as periodontal disease. This infection can spread to the jawbone and bloodstream. According to the Hamilton Animal Hospital, periodontal disease left untreated can lead to health issues like heart, liver and kidney disease (source).

Tooth loss – Eventually an untreated loose tooth will fall out or need to be extracted by a vet. Tooth loss can negatively impact the dog’s ability to chew and may require a special diet.

Bone loss – The infection associated with a loose tooth can cause deterioration of the jaw bone surrounding the tooth socket, leading to additional tooth loss.

According to Blue Pet Vet, prompt veterinary attention for a loose tooth is crucial to stop infection, relieve pain, and try to save the tooth if possible (source). Letting the condition go can seriously jeopardize the dog’s oral health.

When to See the Vet

If your adult dog has a loose tooth, it’s crucial to schedule a veterinary visit. Adult teeth normally shouldn’t wiggle or fall out without an underlying health condition. According to, loose adult teeth indicate potentially serious issues like periodontal disease, infection, or trauma.

You should also see the vet right away if your dog has multiple loose teeth. More than one loose tooth could mean widespread dental disease, bone loss, or trauma from an injury or animal attack. Leaving multiple loose teeth untreated allows problems to worsen.

Furthermore, take your dog to the vet if any concerning symptoms accompany the loose tooth, like pain, changes in eating habits, swelling, or discharge. These signs suggest infection or injury requiring prompt veterinary attention.

In short, adult dogs should receive veterinary exams for any single loose tooth or multiple loose teeth, since they may reflect serious underlying conditions. If any other symptoms arise as well, emergency veterinary care may become necessary.

Treatment Options

There are several treatment options your veterinarian may recommend if your dog has a loose tooth:

Tooth Extraction

Extracting the loose tooth is often the best option, especially if the tooth is very loose or causing your dog pain. Extraction fully removes the tooth and prevents further dental issues in that area. According to, extraction may be recommended if the tooth is fractured, has severe periodontal disease, or has an abscess.

Root Canal

A root canal attempts to save the tooth rather than extracting it. During this procedure, your vet will remove the tooth’s pulp and nerves and seal off the tip of the root. The remaining tooth is then filled and sealed. A root canal can prolong the life of the tooth. However, according to, root canals may not be successful long-term in dogs.


A crown can help stabilize a loose tooth after a root canal. The crown covers and protects the remaining tooth above the gumline. However, crowns may fall out if the tooth and roots are not healthy, so they may not be a good long-term solution.

Home Care

There are some things you can do at home to care for a dog with a loose tooth and help manage any pain or discomfort:

Gently brushing your dog’s teeth daily can help remove plaque and food particles. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and dog-safe toothpaste. Take care to be very gentle around any loose teeth. According to this source, brushing promotes dental health and may help the tooth to re-anchor.

Offering dental chews can also help scrape away tartar while encouraging chewing. Select chews specifically designed for dental health, like Oravet chews or Greenies. Avoid hard, weight-bearing chews that could cause further damage.

Your vet may prescribe antibiotics to prevent or treat any dental infections associated with the loose tooth. Make sure to give antibiotics exactly as directed.

Discourage chewing on hard toys or aggressive playing to prevent trauma to the loose tooth. Avoiding these activities can help prevent the tooth from becoming dislodged prematurely.

Softening your dog’s food with warm water or broth can make eating more comfortable. Canned food is also an option while your dog has a sensitive loose tooth.

Lastly, assess your dog’s pain levels and consider an over-the-counter pet-safe pain reliever if recommended by your vet. This can help provide relief and reduce inflammation around the affected tooth.

Recovery Process

After a tooth extraction, your dog will likely be groggy and disoriented immediately afterwards as the anesthesia wears off. Your vet will go over aftercare instructions before you take your dog home. Typically, dogs need 7-10 days for recovery and healing after a tooth extraction.

Your dog should not engage in any strenuous activity or play during the recovery period, as this can dislodge the blood clot and delay healing. Keeping your dog calm and quiet is important. Short, leashed walks for bathroom breaks are ok. Do not let your dog chew on toys or bones during recovery.

Your vet may prescribe pain medication to keep your dog comfortable during healing. Be sure to give all medicine as directed. Soft, wet dog food is recommended for 7-10 days after extraction so your dog doesn’t have to chew kibble. Give food and water in elevated bowls.

You may notice some swelling and bruising around the extraction site. Apply ice packs to help minimize this. Your vet will want to do a follow-up exam 7-10 days after the procedure to check healing. Call your vet if you notice ongoing bleeding, difficulty eating, or other concerning symptoms.


There are several things dog owners can do to help prevent loose teeth in their pets:

Dental Hygiene: Regular tooth brushing and dental cleanings can help reduce plaque and tartar buildup, which contributes to periodontal disease and loose teeth. Brushing your dog’s teeth at home 2-3 times per week can make a big difference in their oral health. Annual professional cleanings at the vet are also recommended.

Diet: Feeding your dog quality dog food and treats that are specially formulated to reduce plaque and tartar can promote healthy teeth and gums. You may want to avoid hard chew treats and bones that could potentially crack teeth.

Supplements: Some supplements like coconut oil contain lauric acid which has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties to support gum health. There are also dental chews with ingredients to reduce plaque buildup. Talk to your vet about supplement options.

Regular Checkups: Having your vet examine your dog’s mouth yearly or bi-yearly can help catch dental issues early before they progress. Early treatment can prevent loose teeth.

Addressing Underlying Conditions: Manage any illnesses your dog has that could compromise their oral health. For example, diabetes and kidney disease put dogs at higher risk for dental disease.

Following these prevention tips can greatly reduce the chances of your dog developing loose teeth as they age. Proper care will keep their teeth intact and strong.

When to Ask the Reddit Community

Pet owners on Reddit can provide helpful advice and support when dealing with a dog’s loose tooth. The Reddit community consists of caring pet owners who want to help each other. Turn to Reddit for the following reasons:

  • Looking for firsthand experiences with treating loose dog teeth at home
  • Seeking advice on the best home remedies and care techniques to try
  • Asking for recommendations on supplements or dental products
  • Getting opinions on when it’s necessary to see a vet
  • Connecting with others who understand the stress and worry over a pet’s dental issues
  • Finding emotional support during recovery
  • Asking for financial assistance tips if professional treatment is too expensive

The shared experiences of fellow dog owners on Reddit provide helpful insights into the practical and emotional aspects of dealing with your dog’s dental problems. Don’t hesitate to tap into the Reddit community when looking for advice or reassurance.

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