Dog Dental Health: 3 things that wear down dog teeth

Your dog’s teeth, it’s his life source and a symbol of good health.  Did you know that a lot of owners unknowingly allow their dogs to engage in behaviors that could prove detrimental to canine dental health by causing teeth wear?  Here’s a list of behaviors that you should limit.

  1. Pruitis- According to the American Veterinary Dental Society, the most common cause of worn teeth is pruitis, also known as itching and chewing.  Hair is very abrasive and “will commonly cause severe wearing of the incisors, although the canines can also be affected. This can progress all the way to the gumline, and occasionally below.”
  2. Tennis Balls- These seemingly harmless dogs favorite pastime can have serious consequences.  Tennis balls are very abrasive and with heavy use will eventually wear and blunt teeth.  “Dogs that chew on tennis balls or other abrasive toys (think of tennis balls as a scoring pad), will often wear their smaller front cheek teeth (premolars), and the back aspect of the canines. This abrasion won’t do much over the course of one day, but chewing every day for years can cause significant wear.”
  3. Other Hard Objects- Objects like hard dog toys, fences, crate bars etc are also things that you need to watch out for.  “Another cause is chewing on things like fences, which will wear down the backside of the canines. Finally, malocclusions can cause two teeth to come together and wear on each other.”

I’m not saying that should immediately strip your dog from all of his tennis ball and hard toy glory but you should limit his time with these items.  Remember the classic saying, “Everything in moderation!”  Make sure that your dog is not constantly partaking in these behaviors and you will be one step closer to maintaining that healthy snarl :).

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Source: First picture, Courtesy of Anika Evans with Anika Evans Photography; blog content, AVDS; second picture, Lola; third picture, General Lee.


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