What is Abnormal Molar Development ?
Each dog’s mouth varies in size according to their breed, and even though each dog has ten molars they do not always develop as they should. Abnormal molar development usually occurs during teething and dog’s that are smaller with smaller mouths have less space for the molars to properly come through. Some molars do have room, but come in awkwardly and painfully.
Abnormal molar development in dogs is a common occurrence in dogs with smaller muzzles and is when the mandibular tooth, or molar, develops abnormally when a dog is going through the teething phase.
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Symptoms of Abnormal Molar Development in Dogs
The symptoms that your dog will display if it experiences abnormal molar development depend on the nature and severity of its condition. However, there are several symptoms that you will want to watch for, and if you notice any of them, you should take your pet to a veterinarian right away. Symptoms include:
- Bleeding gums
- Receding gums
- Mouth pain
- Inflamed or reddened gums
- Small molars that are “cone” shaped
- Molars coming in irregularly or abnormally
- Molars that are curved
- Bone loss within the jawline
- Exposure of the root
- Decreased appetite
Abnormal molar development in dogs can develop more often in certain dog breeds than others. Canines that have smaller face structures and shorter muzzles can be affected by this disorder. Dog breeds that are more susceptible to abnormal molar development include:
- American Bulldog
- Boston terriers
- Japanese Chin
- French Bulldog
- English Toy Spaniel
- Shih Tsu
Causes of Abnormal Molar Development in Dogs
Abnormal molar development in dogs happens because of a lack of space in the growing dog’s mouth. As he is teething and molars begin to come through the gums, they have difficulty coming in properly. They may not have room to come in, or may just come in at an angle or in an odd place, such as behind the gum. Causes of abnormal molar development include:
- Lack of space within the mouth
- Breed type
- Trauma to the mouth area
- Ectodermal dysplasia
Diagnosis of Abnormal Molar Development in Dogs
The very first step to a successful diagnosis is to pay attention to the symptoms of abnormal molar growth. Familiarizing yourself with the signs will enable you to decide if a call and visit to the veterinarian is necessary.
If you suspect your pup is having difficulty cutting his molars properly, you should see your veterinarian. The veterinarian will look at the dog’s mouth and thoroughly inspect the gums. He may use a probe-like object to gather a little more information, and then perform a dental radiography. The dental radiography is vital in getting the best diagnosis possible and will help determine proper treatment.
One important aspect of dental radiography is to compare one side of the mouth to the other and to gather more information about the specific cause. Dental radiography can detect whether or not the upper or lower molars are not developing as they should. After the full diagnosis the veterinarian will confidently determine the main reason for the abnormal molar growth.
Treatment of Abnormal Molar Development in Dogs
After the thorough examination from the veterinarian, treatment will ensue. Treatment will be dependent upon the specific reason for the abnormal development of the molars.
The veterinarian may prescribe an antibiotic or anti-inflammatory, depending on the condition of the dog’s gums. If they are infected and need to be extracted, he will need the antibiotic to clear up any infection.
Extraction of teeth
If the dog simply does not have enough room and the molars are very crowded and coming in erratically this is very painful and one or more may need to be removed. The extraction of teeth can be non-surgical or surgical, depending on the condition of the molars or other teeth. Dog tooth extraction is more challenging than a human’s tooth extraction; canine teeth have intricate root structures and are deeper into the bone.
A pain reliever may be prescribed to help with inflammation and the pain that comes along with it. The prescription will probably be temporary and it will allow the dog to rest and heal without too much pain.
Recovery of Abnormal Molar Development in Dogs
Once the treatment is complete, the veterinarian will communicate with you what to watch for at home and if any special lifestyle changes are needed. If your pup had to have surgical extraction, be aware that this can be a complex surgery to heal from and the recovery time may be a little longer. He may have to eat soft food until he heals. Once he heals, he will be back to normal.
When this condition is found early, it is successfully treatable and your dog will be on the mend in no time, even if he needs to have surgery to extract any teeth.