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Dr. John
Dr. John, Small animal veterinarian, ER vet
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 1205
Experience:  significant surgical and medicine background, currently working as emergency clinic veterinarian
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My dogs tooth is very loose, barely hanging on. Is it safe

Resolved Question:

My dog's tooth is very loose, barely hanging on. Is it safe to pull it myself?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. John replied 5 years ago.

Dr. John :

Thank you for your question concerning your maltese. Can you describe which tooth it is that is loose?

Dr. John :

Is it a front tooth (incisor), canine tooth, molar tooth, etc?

Customer:

Bottom left, between canines and molars.

Dr. John :

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Dr. John :

So perhaps 305, 306, or 307?

Dr. John :

Does he have gingivitis and dental disease?

Dr. John :

Does the tooth appear damaged at all or just extremely loose?

Customer:

He does not have gingivitis or dental disease. The tooth is not damaged, just very loose. Half of it is up out of the gum.

Dr. John :

Okay - so you have a few options here as this isn't an emergency situation...

Dr. John :

You can leave the tooth alone. It will fall out on his own and he will likely swallow it (which is okay, it will come out in his stool). The disadvantage to this is it may hurt when he chews, while the tooth is still attached

Dr. John :

You can pull it - although it may bleed a bit (if this occurs, you can hold a paper towel or gauze to the area and apply some pressure until it stops)

Dr. John :

You can run him into an ER clinic (probably overkill but up to you) and the vet can quickly pull it and address any issues that may ensue due to pulling it, such as bleeding

Dr. John :

I think any of these above options are reasonable, just depends on what you are most comfortable with

Customer:

Do I need to do anything to the space once the tooth is removed?

Dr. John :

It isn't normal for a pet to lose a tooth without any sort of trauma, so I would also, at your convenience, have all of his teeth fully evaluated for any issues. He may have dental disease present even though it isn't apparent to you

Customer:

We just had his teeth professionally cleaned about six months ago. He really is very healthy. Thanks so much fo your help.

Dr. John :

No. For the molars and canines - we prefer to surgically remove these so that we can place a flap of gingiva over the opening, however for the smaller teeth the defect will be tiny to non-existent and nothing extra is necessary. Oral issues such as this heal very quickly, so within a few days the hole would be filled in and healed.

Dr. John :

Okay perfect... You are very welcome, good luck!

Dr. John :

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