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Full Version: Looks Gruesome, dog in dental pain, help!
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Hello, first post here.  Kinda freakin out.

I have a 11-12 year old Jack Russel possible Fox Terrier mix.  Not sure on exact age (rescue)  I've had him 10 years though.

I was walking across the living room when something jammed in my foot.  It was a tooth.  Since me and the wife have all our teeth I knew it came from the dog.  This prompted a quick amateur dental exam with a flashlight on the couch.  What I saw was horrifying.  Missing several teeth, exposed roots, festering holes in his gums that look pretty deep.  (might even see jaw bone, but could be tooth roots) Its all raw as heck, broken and rotting teeth too, with holes in them.  Holy crap, that looks like it hurts to all heavens.  I am making a Vet appointment immediately for next week ASAP.

I have him soft food tonite out of sympathy.  Thing is, he hasn't acted like anything was hurting him.  Hes pretty darn full of piss and vinegar as always.  In retrospect I have seen him paw his muzzle a few times lately.  As far as eating, he always has eaten really slow since I've owned him.  He has bad seperation anxiety from his previous life before I got him, so he only eats his food if you are in the same room eating dinner with him.  If you leave, the bowl will be full all day, so I didn't notice anything there. 

I feel terrible for not spotting this sooner, but the dog has just been so low maintenance and healthy its ridiculous, and he didnt act like he was in pain.  After looking at it, he must be though....badly.

I am asking for things I can do, or medicine I can give him to ease his pain, until I can get him to the vet.  Soft food is an obvious one.  Any drugs or anything that will help?  I have some powdered benzocaine I got from a dentist years ago, which is a topical anesthetic that is the main ingredient in Sensodyne toothpaste and similar oral pain meds.  I am thinking I could coat a soft object with that to let him chew.  It has worked for me in the past.

I am also asking what is going to happen to my dog at the vet?  Are they going to want to pull all his teeth?  Will his quality of life be at risk, or can he even die from this as it is?  He's pretty old already.  Whats the worst case scenario for him health wise, and what do you think this might cost.  I'm going into the vet with $600, that should be a good chunk I hope.

Thanks for any ideas/opinions.


Here's his tooth I found....wish I could get pics of inside his mouth, but he doesn't want to cooperate., understandably.
[Image: 19554577_1496182043779240_29134102245548...e=5A1214E7]
His name is Willie, and this is him.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=162]
I'll add he's about 28 lbs of pure athletic muscle and energy, and he loves to completely destroy a 16" long hard rawhide chew meant for a bigger dog in under 3 or 4 hours.....we gave him one 2 days ago. I'm really scared about what I saw, in his mouth and I know its my own darn fault. This dog is my best friend. I cant even make a vet appointment for at least 5 days because of the weekend and the 4th of July.
I'm really trying not to come off like an A-hole who shouldn't own a dog because he doesn't take care of it. I love my dog, he's my best friend. I've had dogs before, Willie is my 4th. Never ones with major dental issues though. Hell, I hadn't been to the dentist myself for 20 years up until 6 months ago, and I had quite literally no problems a cleaning didn't fix. Never put much thought into dental for the dog because I don't even put much into it myself, but I guess I been lucky.

17 views, and no response?
Hello there,
I can see your concerns! Some dogs can be quite stoic and won't show much signs when they are in pain. Terriers, in particular, are spunky dogs who are quite stoic in nature (small terriers were often used to hunt down rats and other critters and still hunt even despite being injured, ignoring the pain). It's not like these dogs don't feel pain, they just don't show it in the traditional ways. If your dog was pawing at his mouth, yes, that was a sign of trouble. Bad breath is another one. It sounds like he has advanced periodontal disease and the tooth fell out. Unless you brush your dog's teeth, it is difficult to notice problems. Don't feel bad about it. It happens to dog owners every day to make such discoveries. Usually, the vet notices it though upon examining the mouth.

At this time, you can feed soften foods and then your vet may suggest a dental cleaning and perhaps more extractions if periodontal disease is severe.
By the way by softened foods I mean kibble soaked in water if kibble is what he normally eats. I am sory you haven't received many responses yet, most users may be likely either at work or travelling for the 4th of July weekend.
(06-30-2017, 11:37 PM)iiiquaziii Wrote: [ -> ]I'll add he's about 28 lbs of pure athletic muscle and energy, and he loves to completely destroy a 16" long hard rawhide chew meant for a bigger dog in under 3 or 4 hours.....we gave him one 2 days ago.  I'm really scared about what I saw, in his mouth and I know its my own darn fault.  This dog is my best friend.  I cant even make a vet appointment for at least 5 days because of the weekend and the 4th of July.

His days of rawhide chewing are probably over. 

Hopefully your dog only has a severe case gingivitis or gum disease.  Your Vet might refer you to a Vet oral surgeon.  Probably will exceed your $600 - a dog is low maintenance until they have a health issue.   Most likely the attending Vet will extract multiple loose teeth.  Clean out the gum infection, and suture the healthy tissue back together.  Then place the dog on a course of antibiotics to aid healing. If your local Vet refers you to an oral surgeon, then ask for antibiotics while waiting to see the oral surgeon.   The Vet will also examine, the tongue , and other structures in the mouth to rule out oral cancer.  If you haven't thrown it out yet, keep the tooth which fell out for the Vet visit.

My neighbor's 15 yr old dog ended up with all of her bottom teeth being extracted.  My one 14 yr old dog never had his teeth cleaned.  The last time he chewed on rawhide, he left blood on it.  No more rawhide for him.  His oncologist classifies his oral health as having moderate to severe gingivitis.  My other 14 yr had her teeth cleaned at the age of 7, during an operation to remove a large lipoma tumor, with two teeth extracted at the time.  Her oncologist classifies her as having slight-moderate gingivitis.  My next dog will have its teeth cleaned every 2-3 yrs.

While waiting to see the Vet, you might want to soften his dry food with water.  Or buy the same brand/formulation in a can, so the dog doesn't have to chew hard.   If you suspect your dog has pain (e.g. panting a lot), you could try rubbing some Oragel on the gum which appears most inflamed.  Dogs tend to be very stoic when it comes to pain.  It may not be bothering him that much, despite the appearance. 

Another potential thing to watch for while waiting to see the Vet is any signs the gum infection has spilled into the bloodstream causing a septicemia.  If the dog suddenly starts to throw up, becomes lethargic, and has a temp above 103, then that would be an emergency, and require a trip to a local Vet hospital.  This is unlikely to happen, but could.
Well he is going in on July 8th to the vet which is the earliest I could get. Until then I am feeding him soft canned food or crushed kibble with water. He is still acting fine though. I just never saw teeth this bad and it really freaked me out. It HAS to hurt. Willie still wants to play tug with his rope and catch his Frisbee though, so I wonder how bad it does actually hurt him? I'm worried they are going to take out ALL his teeth, or charge me some crazy $3k price in dental surgery which I cant afford. I just want whats best for my Willie Dog, but I'm not rich. I hope they can help him out.
I soaked a biscuit in water and benzocaine (the active ingredient in oragel and sensodyne) and he really REALLY wants to play tug of war with his rope, but I'm going really easy on him. He almost seems dissapointed. Heh....I hope this works out ok,
You might want to keep the games limited to soft doggy toys.

If you can't afford a huge dental bill for extracting all the decayed teeth, you might consider doing it a couple at a time. Where your dog might be on long term antibiotics such as Clindamycin, or a rotation with Metronidazole, and Clavamox. Vets generally will not prescribe antibiotics for extended periods (e.g. the rest of the dog's life), due to concerns about side effects of the drugs with extended use (e.g. GI upsets, diarrhea), along with promoting bacterial antibiotic resistance.

In summary: If cost is an issue, then create a plan with the Vet to have the dental work performed in steps over the next few months.