What is Tooth Removal?

Whilst many canine dental problems can be solved with a proper cleaning of the mouth, sometimes a more drastic solution is required to ensure the dog's wellbeing. Surgical removal of a tooth is usually seen as a last resort after all other treatment methods have been found ineffective.

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Tooth Removal Procedure in Dogs

A general anesthetic is required before surgery can proceed. The vet will then assess the root structure of the tooth using ultrasound imaging in order to plan the extraction. The tooth is usually pulled out by pulling back the gums and using a drill to dislodge the root from its mooring in the jawbone. An incision along the base of the gums may be required to assist in this. Once freed from the jawbone, the tooth can be pulled out and any root fragments removed with tweezers. The final step is to suture the wound closed and apply gauze to stem the bleeding. The procedure should usually take no more than an hour in total.

Efficacy of Tooth Removal in Dogs

By extracting the entirety of the affected tooth, surgical removal will usually eliminate the problem altogether (although antibiotics will be required in the event of infection). Whilst other teeth may be at risk of developing similar problems (especially if the dog has poor dental health in general), the vet will almost certainly go over some preventative options with the owner.

Tooth Removal Recovery in Dogs

Following surgery, the dog will require a regular dosage of painkillers due to the fact that several nerve endings will have been severed during the procedure. In the hours immediately after the operation, it will be necessary to pack the area of the mouth affected with gauze in order to mitigate the bleeding. Furthermore, owners should monitor their dog over the next few weeks to make sure that they are recovering properly. Warning signs include wincing and continued bleeding (caused by the wound opening up again), as well as facial swelling (which is indicative of an infection). There will be a couple of follow-up visits required in order for the vet to check that the incision is healing properly and to remove sutures. All told, the healing process should take approximately a month to complete.

Cost of Tooth Removal in Dogs

The price of tooth extraction can cost anywhere between $500 and $800. The cost of the procedure fluctuates depending on the overall health of the individual dog and the potential complexity of the required removal.

Dog Tooth Removal Considerations

Whilst a tooth extraction is a relatively quick and straightforward operation, there are a couple of aspects that may give some dog owners pause for thought. The first is the necessity of general anesthetic - something that can be especially dangerous to older dogs (who are also the most likely to require the operation). Second is the question of whether extraction is appropriate in their specific case. Whilst it may appear to be the most decisive way in which to deal with an infected tooth, owners should look to antibiotics and dental treatments as a primary mode of care before moving for extraction.

Tooth Removal Prevention in Dogs

Although some types of infections (such as those incurred from injuries) are unforeseeable, maintaining a good standard of dental health in your dog will prevent the most common conditions that precipitate tooth extraction. Ensuring that your animal eats good quality food and receives a regular dental cleaning will prevent the buildup of harmful grime and bacteria in the mouth, saving them from the pain of tooth decay and infection. 

Tooth Removal Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Belle
Wirehaired Pointing Griffon
7 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Took our 7 year old Wirehaired Pointing Griffon for dental consult after yearly shots. She has some discoloration on 2 front canines with darker color near gumline. We brush her teeth 2-3x weekly and give dental treats. We requested dental cleaning and X-rays PRN. The vet hospital would not X-ray her teeth until day of cleaning, after ISO sedation- scheduled next week. (Strange- no oral or injection sedative for X-rays the day of consult). They said her teeth were in good shape to be 7 yo and wanted to grade her teeth a 1, but hesitantly graded them a “low 2” due to discoloration. Estimate of total- $850-1000 or so, incl potential extraction.
Their policy is EXTRACTION ONLY if they find internal problem with tooth, however, no restoration whatsoever. This gives us concern, as we absolutely do not want her to be in pain or suffer, but also do not want teeth extracted unnecessarily. We also cannot afford $4000 for doggie dental. (Reality).
We were given info on vet dental specialist over 2 hours away after I had multiple questions about our furchild’s care. Called this vet dentist to find out exorbitant pricing ($2200 for consult, X-rays, sedation and cleaning ONLY)—Before any potential restoration- this adds on thousand(s) more depending on # of teeth and problem, bringing total likely around $4000 or more.

We are at a disadvantage. Please advise, help! Should we go with local vet and risk their extraction policy/ protocol or try to sell something (Lol) to come up with literally thousands for restoration?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations
Whilst owners want to keep all their dog’s teeth, sometimes it is cost prohibitive and extraction is a better alternative to pain or complications from infections etc… Restorative Dentistry is great and I found it interesting in Vet School but for most people it is not practical and in reality a dog doesn’t need to hunt and kill for their kibbles and treats. This all comes down to cosmetics versus function, I would take function (and pain free) over having a full mouth of teeth. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Bo
German Shepherd Dog
1 Year 8 months
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Pain
Low Energy
Swelling

I have a German Shepherd named Bo. He is a year and 8 months old and 120 lbs. He has a bottom canine broken and has recently been experiencing some pain and even swelling on the bottom jaw. The vet gave some antibiotics but once they ran out, the problem came right back. There aren’t any veterinary dentists near by, leaving extraction as the primary option. In a dog as young as Bo, would this be a good choice? I hate that he is in pain. Just want to help my buddy out.

Read more at: https://wagwalking.com/treatment/tooth-removal#

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations
Surgical extraction of the tooth may be the best option if you don’t have any Veterinarians who are willing to do any other dental procedure apart from extraction. You wouldn’t be doing any favours for Bo continuing like this and extraction would be a cure all solution. I’ve included a link below to a directory of board certified Veterinary Dentists in case you find one near you. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM www.avdc-dms.org/dms/list/diplomates-map.cfm

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Toby
Chihuahua
4 Years
Moderate condition
1 found helpful
Moderate condition

My chihuahua is 4yrs old. He is a rescue dog. At 2yrs old he needed a stage 3 cleaning and all of his front teeth removed canine to canine top and bottom. At 3 yrs he needed another cleaning and 4 teeth removed. Now he's 4yrs old and I believe he needs another cleaning. His breath is awful and he is constantly smacking his lips all day which makes me think he's in pain. But I think maybe it's time to remove all of his teeth. They are all brown and I think it will make him a lot healthier. What do you think..

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations
If Toby’s teeth are rotten or are not salvageable with a cleaning, it would be best to have them removed; we always prefer to save teeth if possible but in some cases it is best to have them removed. If the teeth only need cleaning, I would recommend having them cleaned and then at home on a regular basis, clean the teeth with some dog toothpaste and a brush. Lip smacking may be due to different issues including acid reflux, so may be unrelated. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

I have a German Shepherd named Bo. He is a year and 8 months old and 120 lbs. He has a bottom canine broken and has recently been experiencing some pain and even swelling on the bottom jaw. The vet gave some antibiotics but once they ran out, the problem came right back. There aren’t any veterinary dentists near by, leaving extraction as the primary option. In a dog as young as Bo, would this be a good choice? I hate that he is in pain. Just want to help my buddy out.

My dogs tooth has littledecay but skin under it's black sensitive to touch

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Judah
Shigtzu/Maltese
6 Years
Moderate condition
-1 found helpful
Moderate condition

Adopted a male Shihtzu/Maltese from BARK. All of his teeth except 2 molars had been removed. His tongue keeps hanging out of his mouth and he pushes it back in with his paw. Can anything be done to help him with the hanging out tongue?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations
There are various different causes for a dog’s tongue to hang out, commonly this is caused by trauma which leaves the dog unable to retract their tongue into their mouth. Neurological injury is normally irreversible especially over a long time frame; an examination by your Veterinarian would be needed to check for any other possible cause of the tongue hanging out but I am unable to think of another cause apart from jaw or dental anomalies. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

We know his tongue hangs out because of having no teeth but we want to know if anything can be done about it for him?

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Bane
Lab/ pit mix
4.5
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Nasal Discharge
Acting strange
Fever unknow
Biting and licking around his legs and but

Medication Used

Ciprofloxacin

Is it normal for a dog to run a fever after having the 4th top premolar extracted? He just had it done yesterday and was prescribed antibiotics. He just seems distressed and his ears feel warm to the touch. Has the infection spread or is spreading? Should I take him back to the vet?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations

People usually associate fever with infection, but inflammation and allergies may also cause an increase in body temperature. Dogs have a higher body temperature than humans and are usually warm to the touch; if Bane is in pain there may be an increase in blood circulation to the ear leading to an increase in heat loss from that extremity. It seems that Bane is on ciprofloxacin which is a widely used antibiotic; I cannot tell you whether or not for certain that Bane has a fever, I would check his rectal temperature to get a core temperature reading which shouldn’t be above say 103°F. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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BrandyBlù
Yorkshire Terrier
7 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Very very bad breath

My yorkie is 7..has had 2 dental cleansings and several teeth removed..his breath is horrible..his whole face smells bad..has no energy..eats poorly..often has stomach upsets..will ge benefit from total extraction..will the infection vanish?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations

Total tooth extraction will obviously removal all of BrandyBlu’s teeth but may not solve the oral hygiene issue; regular cleaning (twice daily) would be best and giving dental sticks would help too. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Bella
Poodle
11 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

some bleeding

My dog, Bella, just had all her teeth removed. White miniature poodle, 11 yrs old....face is dirty with the blood from surgery. They tried to clean her. Can I run water over her with no soap or should I wait?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations

At this point it would be best to use a lint free damp cloth to gently (I stress gently) wipe the blood from around her mouth; pouring water over her may get into her mouth which may remove a clot causing more bleeding. If you wipe her mouth with a cloth, remember that pushing on the lips will push on the gums which in turn will cause pain. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Paris
Chihuahua
11 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Fever
Gums black
bad breath
Rotting teeth

I think my boyfriend's 11 year old chihuahua will need to have her teeth taken out because they appear to be rotting and aligned strangely. How much would that probably cost in NYC? She's about 4 pounds. She doesn't show any particular symptoms of pain, but sometimes her body feels hot to the touch, her gums are blackened, and her breath is not good. She also licks at the air a lot, but apparently she has always done that...

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations

Cost of tooth extractions vary even within a city, the best way to get an accurate quotation is to call two or three local Veterinarians for prices. Online, there is little information which I can reference for you; I found one clinic in Brooklyn which quotes per tooth removal of Incisor: $30, Molar: $50-60, Canine: $90 and up (link below) but these prices still vary depending on the individual animal. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM
www.fullpetservices.com/procedures-and-prices/ (dentistry prices are at the bottom of the page)

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Lila
Lab/Pit mix
3 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

None. Diagnosed during regular check

My 3 year lab mix has two broken molars on the top in the back. One has a loose broken piece and the other is broken off. She doesn't seem to be in pain and they are not infected. My vet has recommended extraction of those teeth. Is this necessary? I have booked the extractions to be performed in a couple of weeks, but I'm so conflicted. Will she still be able to eat her dry food after? She loves to chew, has always chewed and probably broke them that way.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations

Lila likes to chew and that is great, but if the damaged teeth are left it may open the door to problems later on; I don’t know the exact details of the tooth fractures but exposed pulp cavities and other problems can cause larger problems in the future. After Lila has the teeth removed she would require a soft diet for a few days before returning to the kibbles. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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KC
Weimaraner
10 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

None. Diagnosed during regular check

Medication Used

Proin

My 10 year old Weimaraner has a decayed molar that was discovered on the xrays at her last dental cleaning. The vet thinks it should be removed, but I am concerned about the post-anesthesia or post surgical issues at her age. Should I just wait to see if it gets infected or if she appears to be in pain, or be proactive and have it removed?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations

Whilst ten is old for a Weimaraner it isn’t too old, risks associated with surgery and anaesthesia can be mitigated with preanaesthetic blood tests (check liver and kidney function), complete physical examination and good management throughout the process. It would be better to have the tooth removed now rather than when something is complicating what is essentially a simple tooth extraction. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Ody
Havanese
6 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

inflam. of oral cavity tissues

I am wondering what a typical price would be for a full dental extraction for a dog with stomatitis. My dog is a 10 pound terrier poodle, havanese type mix. His teeth are fine but tongue, palate, gums are inflamed. Pulse antibiotic, 2x daily cleaning and vet dental cleaning have not resolved the problem.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations

If you are looking for an accurate price for full mouth extraction it would be best to call your local Veterinary Clinic or two or three in your area to get a ballpark figure since costs may vary widely from practice to practice, city to city and state to state. Depending on your location and your Veterinarian, in the States you may be looking around $3,000 to $5,000. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Apollo
Mixed
10 Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

see above

My dog is a Lab/Rott mix, 10 years old and one of his back molars is pink, soft, and loose. The shape is like a tooth but it is abnormal in color and texture. Do you know what this could be?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations

Discolouration of the teeth like you are describing may be due to tooth resorption, trauma (bleeding in the pulp of the tooth) or a systemic disease; it would be best to have Apollo checked by his Veterinarian to make sure there isn’t any other disease process going on here and to remove the tooth if it is loose so that it doesn’t cause any pain or discomfort. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Peaches
Cockapoo
9 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Loose tooth
Mild pain
Odor
Dark gums

Medication Used

None

My Cockapoo is 9 years old and I think she has a tooth abscess in her back molar. It is loose and her gums above the tooth are black. It hurts for her to chew on that side. Do you have any idea how much this is going to cost me? I will pay whatever it takes. I was just wonder how much it will cost me if it is a tooth abscess and she needs it extracted. We live in Illinois. Thanks, Heather

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1505 Recommendations

The blackening of the gums may be due to a normal pigmentation that you haven’t noticed before or it may be connected to the tooth. Tooth extraction and treatment of an abscess may cost between $500 to $1,500 depending on severity; I can only give a wide ball park figure as I haven’t examined Peaches, call your Veterinarian in the morning and ask them for a price which would be more accurate than I can give you. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

My dogs front two teeth are loose. She is 11 and has never allowed us to brush her teeth. Will they have to be removed?

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