Worldwide medical and scientific journal for animal health professionals

Issue number 22.3 Dental

Juvenile dentistry in dogs and cats

Published 30/03/2021

Written by Jan Schreyer

Also available in Français , Deutsch , Italiano and Español

The incidence and severity of many oral problems (e.g. periodontal disease) increase with age; however young animals can also suffer from oral or dental disorders. The timely diagnosis and treatment of these diseases is essential...

Persistent milk canine teeth in a Yorkshire terrier. The permanent maxillary canine erupts mesially to the milk tooth.

Key points

Oral examination should be a part of every clinical examination; timely detection and treatment of juvenile oral disease can often prevent subsequent problems.


A correct and definitive diagnosis of oral disease is often only possible with the help of intra-oral dental radiographs.


If teeth are clinically absent, radiography is essential in order to exclude the possibility of retained and impacted teeth.


Tooth fractures, even in milk teeth, always require treatment.


Persistent milk teeth should always be extracted as soon as the corresponding adult tooth erupts.


Introduction

The incidence and severity of many oral problems (e.g. periodontal disease) increase with age; however young animals can also suffer from oral or dental disorders. The timely diagnosis and treatment of these diseases is essential and can often prevent the development of serious oral problems in later life; it is therefore important to inspect the mouth of young animals during every examination. Related to this, the question often arises as to whether an oral abnormality is hereditary or not, and in many cases this cannot be easily determined; careful history-taking (e.g. trauma, infection, similar changes in related animals) may help, and if a potentially hereditary disease is present, advice on good breeding practice should be given. Whether hereditary or not, proper treatment should always be the primary focus and this article reviews some common oral and dental problems in young dogs and cats in the period before the second dentition has fully erupted.
 

Ready to access more content?

Anyone working within the veterinary community can register an account to gain access to exclusive content created by experts.

Register

Already registered? Log in here