Abscessed Tooth in Dogs; An abscess is a pocket of pus that forms as the body’s response to an infection. It can occur in any part of the body and is often painful and red. A dental abscess refers to a pus filled pocket that forms from a bacterial infection at the crown or root of the tooth or in the alveolar bone surrounding the root.
Why do dogs have abscessed teeth?
The most common cause of a dental abscess is periodontal disease. Periodontal disease affects 78% of dogs over 3 years old and is the most common clinical sign seen by veterinarians. The bacteria causing periodontal disease are able to migrate below the gum line where they infect the periodontal ligament and alveolar bone that surround and support the tooth root. When this occurs, an abscess can form as the body tries to wall off the infected area. Once this happens, it will continue to grow until it is treated or until it ruptures. If left untreated, an abscess can become very large, invade other structures and may even lead to death if left untreated for too long.
It is important to note that not all dental infections result in abscess formation.
An abscessed tooth is a painful condition that occurs when the pulp inside your dog’s tooth becomes infected. The infection can spread to the surrounding bone and tissue if not treated promptly.
It’s something you’ll need to have a veterinarian treat as soon as possible. It will almost certainly require antibiotics and maybe even surgery, but on the bright side, it’s usually treatable.
Signs of an Abscessed Tooth in Dogs
If your dog has a tooth that’s broken or cracked, the pulp inside is exposed to bacteria that can cause an infection. Other factors that can lead to infection include:
Gum disease (periodontal disease)
Foreign objects lodged between teeth
Tooth or root decay
Injury to the mouth or jaw
Signs of an abscessed tooth in dogs depend on its location in your dog’s mouth. The most common symptoms are listed below:
Swelling of the face, jaw or neck (seen most often with upper canine teeth)
Foul odor from your dog’s mouth
Drooling or reluctance to eat or drink (the pain may be too severe for your dog to eat)
Bad breath (halitosis) that gets worse over time
Nasal discharge (possibly with blood in
An abscessed tooth in dogs occurs when bacteria infect the pulp of the tooth and spread to the surrounding tissues. The infection causes an accumulation of pus, which can cause severe pain and swelling. The condition is most common in older dogs, as they have more likely to have damaged teeth and weakened immune systems.
The following are some symptoms of an abscessed tooth in dogs:
Chewing on one side of their mouth
Dropping food while eating
Facial swelling, especially in the area above the infected tooth (shown here)
Head shaking or tilting
Pawing at the mouth or face
Refusing to eat or eat only soft food
Dogs do not get cavities the way people do, so when your dog has a tooth problem, it is usually due to a bad tooth. If you have ever had a toothache that kept getting worse and worse until it got so painful you could not eat, then you can sympathize with your dog. It is easy to tell if your dog has a toothache; he will cry or whimper when you touch his face or mouth, he will stop eating well and then lose weight, he will have bad breath and constant drooling, and his teeth may be yellowish-brown instead of white. He may even have an abscessed tooth. What is an abscessed tooth?
A dog’s teeth have three layers:
Enamel — this is the outer layer that everyone sees. It’s the hardest substance in the body.
Dentin — this is the layer just beneath the enamel. It is softer than enamel but still hard enough to protect the last layer, called pulp, which contains blood vessels and nerves of the tooth. An infection can occur if something breaks through these layers. The infection is called an abscessed tooth, or more commonly referred to as a bad tooth in dogs. An abscess creates a pocket of pus
A dog with an abscessed tooth is one who has a bacterial infection in the gums and/or in the roots of the teeth. They are quite painful, but many times there are few to no outward signs that your dog is suffering from this condition. That’s why it’s important to know what symptoms to look for if you suspect your furry friend might have an abscessed tooth.
Causes of Abscessed Teeth in Dogs
One of the main causes of canine tooth abscesses is periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is a common problem in dogs—and most of them develop it at some point. This disease affects gums and teeth, and it can cause severe problems if left untreated. In fact, periodontal disease is the primary cause of tooth loss in dogs over 3 years old. At its worst, it can lead to life-threatening secondary infections or even heart problems.
While periodontal disease doesn’t always lead to abscessed teeth, it can make your dog more susceptible to them because bacteria get into the soft tissue areas around the teeth and gums—which can then spread into the teeth themselves.
Other causes include broken teeth or damage to root tips caused by
An abscessed tooth is an infection inside the tooth that has spread from the pulp to the root tips. The infection can progress to form a collection of pus at the end of the roots. The infection and inflammation cause severe pain, and if the abscess ruptures, a foul taste and breath may be noticed. In some cases, swollen lymph nodes in front of the neck may be noticed.
Dogs with dental disease have bad breath and drooling, they often refuse to eat hard food and chew on only one side of their mouth. Some dogs have pain when you touch their face or muzzle area. A veterinarian can diagnose dental disease by examining your dog’s mouth.
Treatment involves cleaning and polishing the teeth, removing any loose or broken teeth, and treating any infections. The prognosis depends on how much damage there is to the teeth and gums, but in most cases these procedures allow your dog to return to normal function and comfort.
Can a Dog’s Tooth Abscess Heal on its Own?
Question: Can a dog’s tooth abscess heal on its own?
Answer: No, it will not. It will contain itself, but it will not heal and go away. The bacteria inside the abscess will continue to grow and multiply, the abscess will enlarge and become more painful to the dog. Eventually, it will burst open, but at this point, the infection will have spread throughout the jaw bone tissue.
I have a 14 year old dog who has a tooth abscess. I have been advised by my vet to get it removed, however due to the age of my dog and the risk of anaesthetic I am reticent to do so. Can this heal on its own?
A dog’s tooth abscess cannot heal on its own as it is a pocket of pus caused by an infection typically within the root of a dog’s tooth. The infection can spread both into the bone surrounding the tooth and into the gum tissue itself. It is however possible for this type of abscess to reabsorb if there is no evidence of it spreading into either the bone or gums. This will take some weeks or months. Very occasionally, it can be seen when teeth are cleaned under anaesthesia that abscesses have healed themselves (reabsorbed) with time, but this is very uncommon and more likely in smaller abscesses.
The answer is yes, if the abscess is small and contained. But it’s dangerous to assume that an abscess will go away on its own. A dog’s tooth abscess can lead to serious health problems such as sepsis, organ damage and heart failure if left untreated.
It’s also important to remember that a dental abscess can develop within a few days or weeks after your dog has had trauma to its mouth or teeth, such as causing damage to the enamel of his teeth by chewing on a bone. He may not even be showing any symptoms of discomfort at first, so you may not notice anything unusual until one day he cries out in pain when you touch his face or try to play with him.
Dental abscesses are usually caused by bacterial infection following a dental injury or chronic dental disease. The bacteria get inside the tooth, which causes the nerve and blood vessels inside to die. This creates a pocket of bacteria and pus called an abscess.
It is not possible for abscesses to heal themselves, because the infection is contained within a sealed cavity. They will continue to grow until the body’s immune system kills off the bacteria or until they burst open, which is often very messy and painful.
A dog with a tooth abscess should be taken to the vet immediately. If it’s left untreated for too long, it can lead to serious secondary problems. Bacteria can enter the bloodstream and cause widespread infection in major organs. It can also spread through the bones of the jaw and into the sinuses.
Once an abscess develops, the infection needs to be treated. While there is some current research that suggests that a canine tooth root canal may not offer any improvement in the dog’s health, it is still the best way to treat an abscessed tooth. If the disease process has progressed to the point where there is bone loss or damage, your veterinarian may recommend extraction of the involved tooth.
In addition to treatment of the specific tooth, antibiotics are often prescribed. There are three goals for antibiotic therapy:
to provide pain relief
to make sure that no other parts of your dog’s body become infected with this bacteria (septicemia)
to prevent a secondary infection of bacteria in your pet’s mouth (canine pyorrhea)
Unfortunately, without treating the infection with antibiotics and extracting or performing a root canal on your pet’s tooth, there will likely not be any resolution of the abscess.
Yes it can. An abscess is a pus filled cavity, and the pus has no where to go except out of the body. Most of the time, an abscess will eventually open and let the pus run out through an opening in the skin. If there is no place for the pus to drain, then an abscess may disappear on its own, although this is rare.
When an abscess heals, it usually leaves a small scar. This scar tissue is not as strong as normal skin. If this area becomes infected again, the scar may break open, allowing more pus to form under the skin.
The answer is yes, if it’s a small abscess. However, this isn’t something you should wait and see about. The abscess may get better on its own, but it almost certainly won’t heal completely.
Even though the dog feels better, the bacteria causing the infection will continue to multiply and spread. You’ll just be putting off the inevitable – an expensive trip to the vet for antibiotics and a tooth extraction.
How Serious is a Tooth Abscess in Dogs?
A tooth abscess in dogs is a serious problem and should be addressed by your veterinarian immediately. In some cases, this could also be life-threatening if the infection is severe enough. This form of infection occurs around the root of the tooth and can radiate outwards to other areas of your dog’s body if not treated promptly.
The symptoms of tooth abscesses in dogs are easy to spot and include:
Drooling or excessive salivation
Bleeding from the mouth or gums
Swelling around the face or jaw area
Lethargy or depression
Lack of interest in eating or drinking
If your dog suddenly loses interest in normal activities, like playing with toys or going for walks, this may be due to a tooth abscess.
A simple dental exam by your vet will reveal any issues related to an abscessed tooth. If it is discovered that your pet has an abscessed dental area, he will need a professional cleaning and antibiotics to heal properly.
A tooth abscess is a serious problem, and treatment is not always straightforward. The infection is usually deep inside the tooth and is difficult to remove. It often reoccurs after treatment.
Regardless of what you do, the main goal of treating a tooth abscess in dogs is to remove the source of the infection. This may require extracting the tooth or performing root canal therapy.
Even when you think you’ve removed every bit of infection, it can still recur, so many veterinarians will also prescribe antibiotics even if they removed the entire tooth.
Dog Tooth Abscesses: The Cause, Symptoms And Treatment
If your dog has a sudden swelling or bump in his mouth, it could be a tooth abscess. An abscess forms when bacteria gets trapped inside a crack or cavity in your dog’s tooth. The bacteria start to multiply and create pus that can’t escape from the tooth, so it builds up pressure inside and causes pain for your dog.
Left untreated, an abscess will cause severe pain for your dog and could lead to other health complications like sepsis (infection of the blood) or osteomyelitis (infection of the jaw).
A tooth abscess is a serious issue that can result in the loss of teeth and other complications if not treated. It is considered to be a dental emergency, especially in dogs.
If the infection is left untreated, it can lead to swelling of the area around your dog’s face, eye or neck. If this happens, it can create difficulties for your dog to open his mouth. In some cases, the abscess might also spread to other parts of its body. If your dog has a fever or seems weak and lethargic, take him to the veterinarian as soon as possible.
Signs and Symptoms
The signs of an infected tooth will vary from one dog to another. However, there are some symptoms that you should look out for:
Bad breath (halitosis)
Swelling on the face or neck
Pain when eating or chewing
Sensitivity around the jaw area
The severity of the tooth abscess is dependent on the extent of the infection. The type of bacteria involved, whether the infection is localized just to the tooth or it has spread to other parts of the body, and whether there are other health problems present all play a role in how sick your dog becomes.
If the infection is localized to one tooth and still confined to that area, then your dog may not be severely ill. He may have a bad taste in his mouth or have some slight swelling around the infected tooth, but otherwise he will seem relatively normal.
If your dog has a fever of more than 103 degrees Fahrenheit, then that indicates that there is an infection elsewhere in his body. The most common site for this kind of “spreading” infection is the soft tissue around the jaw bone in front of and behind the affected tooth (called periodontal pockets) and into the spaces between adjacent teeth. This kind of infection can cause your dog to be very ill and may require hospitalization for several days.
If your dog is suffering from a tooth abscess, the infection can be very serious and is often painful. The infection occurs when bacteria enters the tooth through damage to the enamel, such as a crack or fracture. Once inside the tooth, the bacteria causes an abscess, which is a pocket of pus.
Most commonly, the abscess will occur at the root of the tooth, but it can also occur at locations where the enamel is damaged. For example, there may be many small abscesses in one area of damage to the tooth. If not treated early enough, an abscess can cause severe pain and may even cause death from spreading to other parts of the body.
A dental abscess is usually due to untreated periodontal disease. Periodontal disease causes inflammation of the gum and bone that supports the tooth. As periodontal disease progresses, the tooth becomes loose in its socket. Eventually, infection sets in and the tooth abscesses.
If the dog has a dental abscess, he’ll need to be put on antibiotics in order to calm down the infection. He will also likely need to have any affected teeth extracted (pulled) if they are too damaged to be saved.
The prognosis for dogs with a dental abscess is good as long as periodontal disease is treated early on. If left untreated for a prolonged time, however, periodontal disease can lead to serious health problems such as heart valve infections, bone infections or kidney failure due to bacteria entering the bloodstream. Therefore it’s important that your dog’s teeth are examined by a veterinarian at least once a year so that any dental problems can be caught early on
Abscessed teeth are one of the more common dental issues in dogs. An abscess is a pocket of pus caused by an infection.
The infection can be caused by a number of things, but it is usually associated with poor oral hygiene or dental trauma.
With any type of abscess, there is always a risk of the infection spreading to other parts of the body, including vital organs.
This is why it is so important to treat an abscess before it has a chance to spread.