• It looks like my dog has broken the outer layer of her canine tooth off. From my research it seems to look like an uncomplicated crown fracture. She does not seem to be in pain and is eating and drinking normally. Can I wait a month to bring her in for her annual cleaning? Will that require any intervention?

    Tooth fractures in dogs are difficult to fully assess from just a description and sometimes, they are even difficult to assess without taking an x-ray or having a sedated exam. The challenge is that if the inside of the tooth is exposed, the tooth will need help. Exposure of the inside of the tooth – including the root – can be very painful and usually will eventually lead to an infection of the tooth root – which will require removal of the tooth.

    Part of the challenge in dogs is that although we can do a root canal, their bite is so hard that we usually can not successfully put a cap or replacement crown on the tooth without it breaking shortly afterward. If the inside is not exposed, you may have nothing to worry about, but if the inside is exposed, the sooner you have it evaluated the better your chance of a therapy that might save the tooth.

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