Does Your Dog Need Braces?

Does Your Dog Need Braces?

For over 30 years, veterinary dentists have been using braces on dog’s teeth, but not always for the same reasons humans use them. 

While many of us choose braces to improve the appearance of our smiles, dog braces are used to treat serious dental issues that threaten your pup’s health and wellness. 

Why Do Dogs Need Braces?

Most owners don’t want to put their dogs though the experience of braces. Even when they do, very rarely is a full set of braces necessary. Used only when absolutely necessary, the most common reasons dogs need braces are: 

Malocclusions 

This term refers to skeletal abnormalities or dental issues that result in damaged or misaligned teeth, including overbites and underbites. 

Sometimes malocclusions traumatize other teeth and tissues, leading to gum inflammation, fractured teeth, periodontal disease and tooth loss. 

Linguoversions 

A specific type of malocclusion, this is one of the most common dental issues that dogs get braces for. A linguoversion is when a dog’s lower canine teeth grow pointing upward toward the roof of their mouth instead of down. 

Severe cases cause extreme pain to dogs, and along with preventing them from closing their mouths, the abnormal teeth can poke a hole through the roof. 

Crossbites 

Crossbites occur when the upper teeth fit inside the dog’s lower teeth and is caused my misalignment. It can be one tooth or multiple teeth affected. There are two types of crossbites:

Post-Cancer Surgery

Dogs who undergo jaw removal surgery as part of cancer treatment will commonly have braces placed on their teeth afterwards to keep them from drifting out of position. 

How Do I Know If My Dog Needs Braces?

The person who knows whether or not your dog needs braces is your veterinarian. They will conduct a full dental exam and physical, discussing with you any issues they find. Set up an appointment with your vet immediately if you notice your dog has: 

Many dog owners won’t have the faintest idea that their dogs need braces, so paying attention to any signs of discomfort is important, especially when they are young. Teeth issues that require braces show up in dogs as their adult teeth are developing, and any potential issues should be visible by the time they are 6 months old. 

How Long Does My Dog Have to Wear Braces?

Your dog won’t have to wear braces for very long. Even when taking the most severe dental cases into consideration, the average time of braces treatment ranges from a few weeks to a few months.

Unlike their human friends, their mouths mature much more quickly than ours and their teeth can be moved around much faster. 

What Factors Determine Dog Braces Treatment?

When considering whether dog braces are the right orthodontic treatment for your pet, there are a number of factors to think about. As you ask yourself the questions below, you will better understand the pros and cons of dog braces.

Is Your Dog Healthy Enough for Dog Braces? 

In order to be fitted with braces, your dog must be healthy enough to be put under anesthesia. 

General anesthesia will be used on your pooch at the very least for initial visits and subsequent orthodontic fittings. Depending on a dog’s dental condition and how fast their teeth move, additional rounds of anesthesia may be necessary.

Have a vet examine your dog to make sure they can handle the anesthesia with minimal risk to their health. 

How Much Do Dog Braces Cost? 

While the typical price of dog braces fall into the range of $2,000 to $5,000, several factors go into determining the cost, including: 

Pet dental insurance is a great solution for making dog braces treatment more affordable. 

How Well Is Your Dog Trained?

A big part of how well the treatment process goes will depend on the demeanor of your four-legged housemate. They will be poked and prodded at times throughout treatment and must be able to tolerate such experiences without lashing out. 

How Do I Care for My Dog’s Braces At Home?

For successful dog braces treatment, at home care is very important. Dog braces must be protected from damage, which means a diet of soft foods for the next several weeks, at least.

Additional braces care will include: 

The good news is that after dog braces are removed, dogs can go back to their regular diet and favorite toys. No retainers are needed to hold their teeth in place!

Maintain Your Pet’s Dental Health with Dog Braces 

Dogs can and have been getting braces for years. Dog braces correct dental problems quickly, preventing future dental problems for your pup, and saving you money and heartache. 

Taking care of your pet’s oral care ensures they will be with you for years to come. And when your human family members are ready for braces, we’re here to help! 

Contact us at (310) 819-4222 today to schedule an appointment for a braces consultation.