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Puppy Teething Help

Teething can be a trying time for puppy owners. When puppies start teething, pain caused by teething often leads our four-legged babies to chew on things they shouldn't - including favorite shoes or accessible toes. Today, our Poway vets share advice on how to help relieve your puppy's pain and survive this difficult stage.

Why is my puppy biting me and chewing on everything?

If your pet is chewing on anything their jaws can wrap around, puppy teething can seem like a long process. However, it's important to remain composed and keep in mind that your pup's actions are not driven by mischief, but rather by their need to alleviate the pain and discomfort they are feeling. Your pup may find relief by chewing on the leg of your new sofa.

When do puppies start teething?

Puppies usually start growing their first set of teeth when they are around 5 to 6 weeks old, although this can vary depending on the breed. At approximately 16 weeks old, your puppy will begin to lose their baby teeth and their adult teeth will start to come in.

Are there any common dental problems in puppies that I should watch for?

Puppies rarely experience issues with their first teeth since they only have them for a short period of time. On the flip side, smaller breeds and brachycephalic (short-nosed) breeds face a greater risk of retaining some of their baby teeth. It is more frequently observed in the upper canine teeth, although it can happen in any of your puppy's teeth.

Deciduous teeth that are not lost can cause overcrowding of the teeth, misalignments, bite problems, and general discomfort. It is also believed that they can increase the risk of future dental problems and gum disease in your dog. Removing retained deciduous teeth is typically recommended by most vets during your pet's spay or neuter procedure, while they are under general anesthesia.

How long does puppy teething last?

How long is the teething phase for puppies? Once your furry friend reaches around 6 - 7 months of age, they will have all 42 of their adult teeth and teething will no longer be a concern. 

Many pet parents find the 4 to 5 months of intense teething to be quite challenging. Puppies frequently chew on various objects they come across, including furniture legs, expensive footwear, and even your feet or fingers, in their search for pain relief.

What can be done to alleviate your pet's discomfort and safeguard your valuable possessions? Our veterinary team at Best Friends Veterinary Hospital has a few suggestions for you.

Store Some Puppy Friendly Teething Toys in the Freezer

Puppies, similar to teething babies, frequently discover that chewing on cold or frozen objects helps alleviate teething discomfort. You can find a wide range of teething toys at most pet stores, but you can also freeze any dog toy to help soothe your pup's teething discomfort. Choose from a variety of excellent options like dog-specific soft toys, Kongs, and rubber bones.

Offer Your Pup Extra Durable Chew Toys

Brands like Nylabone offer teething bones for puppies that are sized appropriately for small, medium, and large breeds. These bones come in different flavors to entice your puppy away from less interesting items and towards a delicious chewy treat. This helps promote healthy chewing habits and provides relief from teething pain.

Edible Teething Sticks for Puppies

Reputable dog food companies offer a variety of edible puppy teething treats and bones that can provide relief for your pet's mouth discomfort. You may be recommended a specific one for your small dog by your veterinarian, or you can choose from a variety of flavors and sizes at your local pet store. Ensure your pup receives the maximum benefit from the teething treat by selecting the appropriate size.

Healthy Frozen Foods For Puppies to Chew

Tasty treats such as frozen bagels, frozen carrots, and other nutritious vegetables are enjoyed by many puppies. Before feeding your dog frozen food, it's important to consult with your veterinarian to make sure it's the right choice for your pup.

My puppy keeps biting me, what should I do?

Puppies naturally play by nipping and biting. When a puppy bites another too hard, the injured pup will emit a high-pitched yelp.

Put a stop to your young puppy's nipping and biting before it escalates. If your little friend bites you, try mimicking the yelp of a distressed puppy to effectively stop this behavior. Your puppy may be startled and back off if they hear a loud, high-pitched 'OW'. Make sure to reward your puppy for their good behavior when they come to a halt and back off.

If your puppy becomes more aggressive and starts nipping at you as a result of this approach, you can calmly disengage from playtime and either walk away or gently place your pup in their crate for some peaceful time alone.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

For more tips on caring for your young puppy, contact Best Friends Veterinary Hospital. Our vets take pride in improving the health of Poway pets.

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Best Friends Veterinary Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Poway companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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