Help, My Puppy is Teething!

dog chewing on toy bone.

If you have a puppy in your home, chances are just about everything you own is a chew toy, especially if your puppy is teething. Beverly Hills Veterinary Associates has some helpful hints to get you through this challenging time. 

Doggy Dentition

While losing our baby teeth is pretty much a rite of passage in childhood, we often overlook this short, but distinct period in the lives of our dogs. 

Like human babies, puppies are not typically born with teeth. They do however, grow all of their deciduous (baby) teeth by about three-five weeks of age. By the time most pups go home with their new family, they have a full set of chompers.

These are not permanent teeth, though. Puppies begin to lose their deciduous incisors around four months of age and will complete teething by seven-eight months of age. This means that for the first few months you have a new puppy in your home, teething is at its peak. 

When Your Puppy is Teething

As new teeth erupt, there may be some soreness and discomfort. Most pups do quite well and don’t require much help from their human counterparts. As long as your pet is eating, drinking, and playing, there is really no need to intervene.

When a puppy is teething, though, it is only natural that they want to soothe their sore gums. This may mean that just about everything in your home (and on your body) is fair game! So how can you help when your puppy is teething?

  • Supervise chewing of soft, flexible toys
  • Provide rubber chew toys that stimulate the gums
  • Consider freezing chew toys to give a cool sensation to a sore mouth
  • Give occasional treats such as a cold carrot or frozen bagel to chew
  • Redirect chewing on inappropriate objects
  • Try not to play with your hands when your puppy is biting
  • Avoid tooth brushing during this phase so that your puppy does not associate handling their mouth with discomfort

Your puppy’s teeth are likely to fall out without any help from you. In fact, you may not even notice as the baby teeth exfoliate and the new adult teeth emerge. So much for putting the teeth under your dog’s pillow for a visit from the puppy tooth fairy!

Don’t ever give your pet any over-the-counter pain medication which can cause toxicity or ice cubes that can break fragile puppy teeth. Call us if you feel your pet is in a lot of discomfort so that we can help. 

Caring for your teething puppy is the start of a good foundation for proper doggy dental care as your pet ages. While teething is a pretty short-lived event, get your pup off with the right paw forward by providing safe and comforting objects to chew on.