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Signs of Dental Issues in Dogs

February 15, 2020

February is Pet Dental Health Month! Dogs need proper dental care, just like people do. However, since your canine companion can’t tell you if his teeth hurt, you’ll need to keep an eye out for warning signs. A Las Vegas, NV vet lists some common signs of dental issues in dogs below.

Bad Breath

Man’s Best Friend has many charming qualities, but minty-fresh breath isn’t one of them. That said, while Fido’s affectionate kisses may not smell like peppermint, they shouldn’t leave you gagging, either. (It’s worth noting that bad breath can be an indication of many health issues, not just dental trouble.)

Bleeding Gums

Have you noticed bloody smears on your dog’s dishes or toys? If so, Fido may have dental problems.

Tartar Buildup

Visible tartar buildup is a sure sign that Fido could use a deep cleaning. This is also often an indication of gum disease. Gum disease is very common in dogs. In fact, as many as 80 percent of dogs over age three are afflicted. The disease is painless at first, but can cause tooth loss or movement. It can also contribute to some very serious medical issues, such as heart disease.


Swelling around the face, mouth, or snout can be a sign of a serious infection. This is very dangerous, due to the proximity to the brain.


Some pooches are naturally a bit slobbery. However, stringy, ropy, or excessive drool can be a sign that Fido has dental problems.

Reduced Interest In Play

Dogs use their mouths to play, so it’s no surprise that dental issues can diminish your pet’s frisky streak. Plus, dogs sometimes crack or break their teeth by chewing on or playing with hard objects, which can understandably dampen their enthusiasm a bit. If Fido’s favorite plushy toy is gathering dust, he may have dental issues. Your furry friend may also act grumpy and/or withdrawn.

Changes In Eating Habits

If you’ve ever tried chewing with a toothache, you know it can be excruciating. Fido may chew on one side of his mouth, dribble food, take longer eating, or start preferring softer foods. In severe cases, dental issues can cause dogs to stop eating altogether. Needless to say, this can be extremely dangerous.

Do you know or suspect that your dog is experiencing dental issues? Contact us, your local Las Vegas, NV vet clinic, today!

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