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We took the dogs to the vet today for their annual checkups and immunizations.  The vet found that Ned has a slab fracture on his back molar.  He said it is quite a common occurance - NOT at my house! His suggestion is to watch it and when it starts to get infected, have it removed.  I did a search on dk and what I found seems to bear out that repair is not always successful as well as bring very costly.   Ned chews on bones, antlers, Nylabones. I have always worried that since we use larger and strong chewer ones because of the bigger dogs it might be bad for Ned's smaller jaw/teeth.  Maybe this is not a good idea or maybe his tooth would do this anyway? Does anyone have any updated information they can share? Opinions on waiting until it bothers him?  Having the vet do the procedure rather than seeking a doggy dentist?  We are still paying for Gordie's CCL surgery........ sigh.

UPDATE. NED GOT HIS TOOTH PULLED

We had a phone consultation with a specialist and were told that pulling Ned's tooth was a relatively simple procedureSo we decided to have our regular vet do it.  Since we were concerned that if we waited until it was infected ( allowing him to keep the tooth longer), there might be more complications, so we had it pulled last week. 

Ned had nothing to eat or drink after midnight and was dropped off  at 8 a.m.  I  called periodically all day only to be told that they hadn't gotten to him yet.  We called at 4:00 and he still hadn't been worked on, so we decided that we would pick him up and bring him back. But when we got there they were just finishing him up and they said we would have to leave him overnight!  I was quite upset about that because Ned has never been away from  us at night,  he doesn't eat in public and doesn't pee or poo for others or on-leash very well at all.  I was there when they opened the next morning expecting a mad, pouty Ned.  However, a cheerful good-smelling, happy-to-see-me Ned pranced out to greet me the next morning. As soon as we got outside to the grass, he peed for about an hour! 

He is taking 50 mg of Rimadyl once a day and the antibiotic, Clindamycin, 75 mg twice a day.  He was starving for a couple of days and even ate as soon as I set the dish down, but now has settled back into his old habit of night eating - but with an improved appetite.  I was told I didn't need to, but I have been softening his kibble and will continue to do so until he runs out of meds.  He had a few disolving stitches to close the gum and my logic tells me that he shouldn't irritate it with hard kibble. Because he is eating more, I wonder if his tooth did hurt him... or.... maybe he just  likes softened kibble.

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The vet showed it to me but I didn't get a good enough look - I thought lower back molar and my DH thought it was the upper.  Now that it is daylight, I am going to try to find it.  Ned holds still but he has a little bitty mouth and it is really hard to see in the back.

Oh poor Ned...I'm so sorry Nancy.  I would worry about waiting for an infection mostly because I'm not sure I'd even know it until it got really bad.  I had a tooth that abscessed once and the infection spread very quickly in my jaw.  It was a nightmare...draining...antibiotics, lots of pain.  It will be interesting to see if insurance will cover this.  Good luck and please keep us posted.

The vet told us to check for a bump on the gum.

aw ned. duncan said his tooth hurts....he's having sympathy pains ever since i read him this post. 

Hope the tooth can be dealt with before it causes any major discomfort and for a price that won't cause your mom's wallet any major discomfort.

Thanks brother Duncan,   It makes me feel better to have sympathy pains.  It doesn't hurt too much now but it itches I think cuz I am scratching.

I guess my question would be whether you have consulted a vet dentist or just your regular vet.  I'd spend the money on a consultation with a real doggie dentist before making any decisions.

That is my plan Trudy.  I am calling the vet surgeon who operated on our Springer's torn CCL.  His website mentions dentistry.

So sorry to hear about little Ned! I like your plan of action. Tara's vet is also a dental specialist and she is very much against dogs chewing bones or anything hard.  Even bully sticks are too hard in her opinion although that is what Tara's chews. I think the dentist vets are all about the teeth and not so concerned with how you keep your dog entertained all day long!  We discussed tooth repair procedures with her when our cat had a problem tooth and she doesn't think much of repairs primarily because they just don't last.  She also said, and you probably know this, that animals do a very good job of hiding their pain so it might be hard for you to know when Ned's tooth is at the point of needing to be pulled due to infection and he could experience much suffering.  I don't like the idea of waiting for an infection to happen either because of the risk of spreading and the affect that a dental infection can have on the entire body.

One thing I liked about having a specialist do Amber's (cat) extraction as opposed to a "regular" vet was that she had the equipment needed to monitor Amber's vitals during surgery and was prepared for anything unexpected that might happen. Her equipment and procedure was more sophisticated and up to date than our other vet.  When Amber had her teeth cleaned at a regular vet in the past she awoke in a VERY aggressive state. The specialist to me that it was because the anesthesia that was used by the regular vet causes cats to hallucinate!!!! OMD! So such things can be avoided or better handled by a specialist.

Ricki, thank you soooo much for all of this information.  I appreciate information from  a specialist. Having up-to-date and correct equipment for the procedure seems important. And I am sure that though my vet has done a ka-zillion tooth pulls, he may not up on the latest dental procedures.  I know he told us in the 'old' days he did CCL surgeries, but not any more because of new techniques, so he referred us out.

Poor Ned! I hope it all works out and that he doesn't have any pain from it.

Sorry to hear this Nancy.   You know.  I saw a brochure in my Vet's office a couple of months ago about Pet dentistry.   They can do crowns, fillings and even bridges now.   Isn't that amazing?    I am sure you would have to take him to a Specialist, but wonder if Ned would be a candidate for a crown instead of losing the tooth?  

Nancy, something else I just remembered about the dental specialist is that she is the only vet in our area that has the equipment to take dental x-rays. These are really instrumental in knowing what is really going on with a tooth problem.

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