No, you cannot pull your dog’s tooth out. Regardless if the tooth is loose and unstable in the jaw, it’s not advisable to do it.

Experts advise in these situations to visit a veterinarian who will perform professional removal with general anesthesia and will manage to minimize the possibility of complications with post-operative care and antibiotics’ prophylaxis.

There are many causes of loose teeth, depending on the dog’s age, breed, and other following diseases, which will be further analyzed in the article below.

Unprofessional Tooth Extraction in Dogs

  1. Causes of Loose Teeth In Dogs
  2. Alarming Symptoms
  3. Complications Of Unprofessional Extraction
  4. Correct Professional Treatment and Prevention of Complications

1. Causes of Loose Teeth In Dogs

A loose tooth is not always the cause of serious damage to the teeth or jaw, and there are periods in the development of dogs when it is normal to have instability and tooth loss.

Deciduous teeth in puppies grow 3-5 weeks after birth until they grow a total of 28 teeth.

Then, at the age of 7-8 months, they gradually begin to fall out until all 42 adult teeth emerge, so if you find a fallen out tooth around the house or in their food, book an appointment with your veterinarian and bring the tooth along.

Beware of retained teeth – baby teeth that remain in the mouth after adult teeth have erupted, most commonly found in the upper canines.

Gum illnesses, such as gingivitis and periodontitis, are other causes of loose teeth.

They are caused by the accumulation of bacteria (plaque) along the gum line, which is partly caused by a lack of adequate dental hygiene.

Bacterial waste products such as hydrogen sulfide, ammonia, acids, and other chemicals build and harm tissues as the quantity of germs below the gum line increases. [1]

Injury, tooth fracture, enamel irregularity, and tooth decay are all examples of endodontic illnesses.

External trauma (e.g., aggressive play or a car accident) or chewing inappropriate things can fracture teeth (ex. real bones, hooves, antlers, hard nylon toys, rocks, fences, or cages).

These causes can lead to loose teeth, or teeth fall out and you should immediately seek for professional veterinary help. [2]

2. Alarming symptoms

If the cause of the teeth instability and falling out is gum disease or an external trauma of a more serious manner, the following symptoms might appear:

  • Gnawing at the gums
  • Swelling of the face
  • Redness or bleeding along the gum line (gingivitis and periodontitis)
  • Drooling stained with blood; bleeding when the dog is chewing on a chew toy or blood near their food or drink bowl.
  • Chewing problems: feeding solely on a single part of their mouth or even problem picking up and maintaining food in the jaw. [3]

3. Complications Of Unprofessional Extraction

Excessive force or the use of extraction forceps before the tooth has been sufficiently lifted can result in root fracture.

Anatomic differences in root structure (e.g., hooked, bent, or spherical roots) can make the root more susceptible to fracture during extraction.

There are some challenging issues during the tooth extraction.

The dog’s meso-distal root of the mandibular first molar has a channel running along the distal side of the root in an apical coronal axis, making tooth extraction extremely challenging. [4]

While attempting to retrieve fractured root tips, you might displace a tooth root into the mandibular canal, nasal cavity, or maxillary sinus.

Attempts to retrieve fractured root tips might replace a tooth root in the mandibular canal, nasal cavity, or maxillary sinus. [5]

During the extraction, due to damage to the vascular structures and soft tissues, Excessive bleeding may originate from the extraction site, which in most cases, can be controlled by direct pressure with a moist gauze sponge.

In case the bleeding originates from the mandibular canal or nasal cavity, direct ligation of the vessels is usually not possible.

Suppose too much force is used during extraction with “DIY surgical materials” before the tooth has been adequately elevated.

In this case, a piece of buccal alveolar bone may be removed with the extracted tooth.

In small-breed dogs, the ratio of first molar height to mandibular height is higher than in bigger dogs, creating a higher risk of pathological fractures, especially in the presence of gum- diseases where the size and stability of the periodontal ligament are notably decreased. [6]

Once the tooth is improperly removed and part of the root remains stuck in the jaw, bacteria from the mouth and food enter the pulp tissue, it becomes inflamed (pulpit) and results in deep infection and necrosis of the tooth if left untreated. [7]

Inflammatory products produced by bacteria and dying pulp tissue leak from the bottom of the root (root tip), and the infection now contaminates the bone surrounding the root resulting in apical periodontitis.

Recurrent infection can result in the accumulation of pus in the oral cavity or surrounding tissue creating an abscess, which can later spread to other organs, spreading the contents through the blood (sepsis), which sometimes leads to fatal consequences. [8]

4. Correct Professional Treatment and Prevention оf Complications

The primary examination performed on dogs with broken or loose teeth is a radiographic scan of the jaw to determine the location of the roots and the degree of inflammation of the surrounding tissue. [9]

Once the position of the tooth is detected, an anesthetic is given, and the gingiva is separated from the tooth until the entire tooth is freed from the alveolus.

The roots are then removed with forceps with constant, apical, and rotating force, and the empty alveolus is rinsed with saline. [10]

A suture is made without tissue tension to prevent food and bacteria from entering the tissue, as well as post-operative bleeding.

Analgesia may be needed for 48-72 hours post-op with major extractions, although an anesthetic nerve block of the infra-orbital or inferior alveolar nerve significantly reduces pain 48 hours after the procedure.

Antibiotic therapy is prescribed 5-7 days after surgery, and it is advisable to eat liquid food and control it after one week. [11]

Can I Pull Out my Dog’s Loose Tooth?

No, you should not pull it out under any circumstances and should book an appointment with your veterinarian as soon as possible.

The cause of the loose tooth is generally unknown to the pet owners, and the complications due to unprofessional extraction are numerous and may even be fatal.

Finally, the pain your pet will bear during the procedure you perform will be enormous and may lead to psychological problems such as anxiety, depression, and phobia.