Top 10 Dog Breeds with the Worst Teeth

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While some dogs seem gifted with healthy chompers, there are some breeds that have more than their fair share of dental issues. Genetics plays a huge role in how a dog's mouth is formed, and can mean the difference between a regular plaque buildup to severe tooth and gum problems. For example, the pawdorable brachycephalic faces of Boxers and Boston Terriers form a wider mouth that makes them more prone to tooth misalignment, plaque buildup and periodontal disease. Small and toy breeds have a bigger problem as all 42 teeth struggle to fit into their tiny mouths. Sometimes, baby teeth don't come in until a dog is past puppyhood, or don't reabsorb when the adult teeth grow in, and fight for space in a mouth already full. Narrow muzzled dogs like Shelties can be prone to infections in gum pockets, or overbites. A thickening of the gums, or gingival hyperplasia, can occur in breeds like Boxers and Mastiffs. All these conditions can lead to plaque buildup, tissue and tooth loss, periodontal disease, and most importantly, pain for your furry buddy. Check out our list of the top 10 dogs with the worst teeth to help you decide if these breeds are for you.

#1 Dachshund

Though pawrific for getting into badger holes, the narrow muzzles of Dachshunds are prone to overbites. This can result in tooth damage and loss which can lead to more serious gum issues. Doxies are the most common breed seen at the veterinary dentist, so be sure to have regular checkups for your pup to stay on top of any developing problems.

#2 Yorkshire Terrier

At number two, the Yorkie often has persistent deciduous teeth, or baby teeth that won't go away and crowd the adult teeth for space. With all those extra teeth, they also get lots of tartar buildup, and have become known for their bad breath. If your pup's kisses make you crinkle your nose, better get a dental check-up!

#3 Shih Tzu

These furballs have those cute pushed in noses that you just want to smoosh. But those faces could mean that their teeth don't line up right and cause pain and other problems. The little lion is also prone to late baby teeth that can cause cysts to form. To top it off, their small mouths can also get overcrowded! With this triple whammy, this pup needs a lot of care!
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#4 Maltese

Often known as the happiest of pups, it seems like nothing gets the tiny Maltese down. But if you notice your white puffball dropping food or hesitating to eat, it may be a sign of pain from tooth overcrowding or an underbite. Maltese are also prone to late or failed tooth eruption, which can cause your cutie a lot of discomfort.

#5 Collie

This alert herder is pawtastic at keeping on eye on sheep or kids, but due to their narrow muzzles, they are prone to dental problems. Collies can experience tooth loss, and tend to have overbites, which can cause pain and tooth damage. They can easily get infections in their gums, as well as gingival hyperplasia, or a thickening of the gums too!

#6 Lhasa Apso

Once a guardian of Tibetan temples, this pawdorable pup was bred for their keen hearing and tolerance to cold. Unfurtunately, their tiny mouths and brachycephalic faces predispose them to teeth that don't always line up correctly and tend to overcrowd. They are also prone to late tooth eruption, all of which can cause pain and damage to their delicate teeth and gums.

#7 English Bulldog

These meaty pups have a laid back attitude that often make it seem like nothing bothers them. But those cute brachycephalic faces mean wider mouths that can have misaligned and overcrowded teeth. English Bulldogs are also genetically predisposed to gingival hyperplasia, a condition which causes an overgrowth of gum tissues which can cover the teeth.

#8 Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

These silky beauties are the pawfect companion pups, but due to their small size, they can have all the issues that come with small mouths, like overcrowding and misaligned teeth. They, too, can have late tooth eruption, and are prone to more tartar buildup than other breeds. All these mean that this royal pup can suffer from gingivitis and tooth loss.

#9 Pug

Not only is a Pug a tiny breed with a tiny mouth that can't always hold all those teeth comfortably, but they also come with pushed in brachycephalic faces that make them so adorable. A Pug's teeth often don't line up the right way and tend to be overcrowded. Even more, this furrific breed is also prone to periodontal disease.

#10 Chihuahua

Being the smallest breed isn't easy! And fitting all those teeth into the smallest dog mouth in existence isn't either! Out of all the tiny and small breeds, these little pups have the hardest time with tooth overcrowding. Due to this, they often have lots of plaque buildup between teeth, which often leads to periodontal disease.