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Understanding the Puppy Teething Process

February 1, 2021

Do you have a puppy? If so, you will need to provide lots of chew toys over the next few months, as well as doing some petproofing. Aside from protecting the sofa legs from your puppy’s incessant chewing, there’s not a whole lot you can do while your new pet is going through the teething process. However, it’s a good idea to learn about teething. That way, you know what your puppy is going through and when, and you can let your vet know right away if something seems amiss.

Newborn Puppies

Just like human babies, our canine buddies are born with no teeth. They don’t need them at this stage, after all—your puppy will nurse milk from their mother. At this stage, puppies can’t chew: they would need to be hand-fed from a bottle if the mother isn’t available.

2-3 Weeks of Age

Around two or three weeks of age, your puppy’s first baby teeth will start coming through his gums. The smaller front teeth, called the incisors, are usually the first ones to appear. The canine teeth will follow—these are the four long fangs. Your puppy’s premolars are the last to arrive, and they come in behind the canines near the back of the mouth. When everything has been said and done, your puppy will have 28 baby teeth, which are known medically as the deciduous teeth and are often referred to as the “milk teeth.”

6 Weeks of Age

By the time that your puppy is about six weeks old, all 28 baby teeth will probably have come in. Around this time, little Fido will be in the process of getting weaned off of the mother’s milk or formula, and will begin eating solid puppy food.

3-4 Months of Age

Around the 12- to 16-week mark, your puppy’s baby teeth will start to fall out. The adult teeth come in and simply push the deciduous teeth out of the way. You may occasionally notice a baby tooth on the floor or by your puppy’s water or food bowls. Most often, though, your furry friend simply swallows the baby teeth as they come out, which is perfectly normal.

6 Months and Older

By the time your dog is around six months old, all 28 of his baby teeth will likely be gone, replaced by 42 adult teeth. Your puppy will now have his molars in addition to his premolars, which are the largest teeth at the back of the mouth that help with chewing and mashing food … as well as the occasional book or sneaker. Ask your vet for puppyproofing tips!

Do you have questions about your puppy’s teething? We’re here to help. Call your vet clinic in Waterdown, ON today.

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