Your Dog May Have a Tooth Infection

February 4, 2021 6:25 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Dogs need dental care, just like humans. Unfortunately, it’s all too easy to forget to pay attention due to our busy lives. Between work, school, children, cleaning, feeding your pets and more, canine tooth infections and gum disease in Phoenix, AZ are probably not something you think about often.

By the age of three, though, most dogs have had a disease or infection that requires extraction. This usually starts with periodontal disease and can develop into a serious infection. Do you know how to spot the signs of dog tooth infection? Since dogs are instinctually wired to hide pain and discomfort, they may not give off the same signs a human would. Here are some of the most common:

  • Drooling: If your dog already drools a lot, no need to panic. This is the least common sign of a tooth infection. In fact, cats are far more likely to drool from tooth infections than dogs. However, if your normally drool-free dog starts leaking like a water balloon, you should take them into the vet as soon as possible—especially if you notice any of these other signs.
  • Decreased appetite or refusal to eat: It’s never a good sign when your dog has a decreased appetite, although many dogs will simply power through and eat anyway, thanks to their survival instincts. Watch your dog carefully. If they’re taking longer to eat, seem to favor one side of their mouth or refuse to eat altogether, it’s time for a checkup.
  • Bad breath: Is it their new, extra-stinky treats or is it a tooth infection? Bad breath—that is, breath that smells worse than an average dog treat—is the top sign that your dog has some sort of dental distress. Make an appointment if you notice that their breath smells more like rotting garbage than dog food—unless they’ve gotten into your garbage can when you weren’t looking.
  • Facial swelling: Finally, facial swelling is a telltale sign that something is seriously wrong. If you notice your dog’s face swelling up on one or both sides, call their vet right away. If it’s not taken care of immediately, it could develop into upper respiratory problems and even more serious ailments.

Taking care of your dog’s dental health is crucial to their overall wellbeing. Depending on your dog and how cooperative they are, you can try brushing their teeth, getting some dog-friendly oral rinses or picking up some dental treats to help keep their mouths clean. (Treats are far and away the dog-approved choice, but may not be effective for every pet.)

If you notice any of the above signs, or if your pet is acting more lethargic than usual, it’s time to schedule an appointment with your vet. Since dogs are experts at hiding pain, even seemingly small signs can indicate big problems.

For more information about dog tooth infections and dental disease in Phoenix, AZ, book an appointment with Christown Animal Hospital today. We’ll help you get your pet’s oral health back on track.

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