Puppy Teething 101: What to Watch Out For

When to Consult Your Veterinarian

Retention of baby teeth is a common problem; this happens if the permanent tooth bud doesn't grow immediately beneath the baby tooth, so the roots of the baby tooth aren't reabsorbed as they normally are. This happens most often with the canine teeth. If the baby tooth stays there for more than a week it can interfere with the puppy's occlusion, especially if he's a toy dog, so you should consult your veterinarian if you suspect this is happening.

Sometimes a baby tooth just remains in place, with no visible permanent tooth. Never have a retained baby tooth pulled without first checking to make sure a permanent tooth is ready to take its place. Sometimes, in toy breeds especially, the permanent tooth never develops and the baby tooth is the best you'll get!

As your puppy grows he'll need more chewing toys — even once he's through teething. Assemble a group of dog toys and only let your puppy have a few at a time, rotating them every few days so he has the excitement of new toys. Be sure to include some interactive toys, such as those he must work at in order to extract food. You can fill these with kibble, soft cheese, canned dog food or peanut butter and then freeze them to make them last even longer. Some toys dispense kibble a piece at a time as the toy is rolled. With luck, your dog will prefer these fancy toys to your fancy belongings.

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