What to do about my dog's mouth problem??
June 6, 2012 6:06 PM Subscribe
My adult dog lost a tooth a couple weeks ago after chewing on a Nylabone. I took the bone away, and was planning to make an appointment for cleaning/ scaling in a month or so, when I could afford it. Today I found another tooth and now I'm more worried that this is something that can't wait. Help please!
posted by GastrocNemesis to Pets & Animals (15 answers total)
My dog (a small rescue mutt who I think is about 7 years old, I've had her for 5 years) has always had bad breath. I mentioned my concern about it to her vet before and he just looked at her teeth and said "Actually they don't look that bad to me, you could get them cleaned if you want but I'm not worried." So I didn't worry too much about it, I'd been meaning to get her teeth cleaned soon but hadn't gotten around to it yet.
I make it a point to give her only dry dog food and dry crunchy treats so as not to make her breath worse. Same with bones, I used to give her rawhide sometimes but chewing them makes her kind of gross and stinky so I stopped giving them to her. When I was at home a few weeks ago, my mom bought some stuff for her including a Nylabone. She's had those before, so I figured it would be ok and let her chew on it. A couple days later I noticed one of her front bottom teeth was gone! I took away the bone and planned to schedule a vet appointment for her to get a cleaning soon, like in July. (I'm a student and currently in-between loans now, I can barely even pay my own bills until I get my next loan in July.)
But today, just now, I found another one of her teeth that had fallen out, and I'm really worried about her. (Front top tooth, if it matters, the same side/spot as the other one that fell out.) Now that I think of it, her breath has been kind of worse than usual lately, although it's bad most of the time so I wasn't sure whether I was just imagining it.
She hasn't seemed to be in any pain as far as I can tell- she eats normally, no bleeding, the tooth didn't have any blood on it, etc. That's why originally I figured it could wait a few more weeks- I thought it was maybe just a random thing, mostly caused by the Nylabone. Now I'm concerned there's something more serious going on. I'd take her to the vet this second if I wasn't flat broke, but I am. I don't know what to do.
So my questions are:
-If I keep an eye on what she's chewing (that is, don't let her chew anything but food basically) will she be okay for a few more weeks? Is there anything I can do to help her right now (like, will brushing her teeth help or exacerbate the problem?) Is it possible the second tooth was also mostly loosened by the Nylabone and just took a little longer to come out completely? (Like I said the two teeth she lost were a top and bottom one in the same spot, presumably the spot she was using to chew. So hopefully the other teeth in her mouth are not in immediate danger of falling out.)
-For those of you who have experienced this, what was the outcome and how much did it cost? Is it likely that she will need to get more teeth removed or might this be something reversible? Are there any signs/ symptoms I should be on the lookout for that would indicate that this is getting serious and she needs immediate treatment?
-If this is something that really can't wait, are there any vets that offer payment plans or billing, in Chicago? I know the answer is probably no, but I can't imagine that I'd be approved for CareCredit. My credit sucks at the moment. I guess I could beg her previous vet to work out some sort of billing with me, but I'm hesitant because he was the one that dismissed my concerns in the first place. Plus, I've moved since then so it's a good 45 min to an hour away. I'd been planning to find a new vet. I do *know* a vet in the area that I've done some freelance work for, but have never taken my dog to him- would it be inappropriate for me to ask him to help me out in some way? (E.g. Maybe he'd consider working out a billing plan with me and in return I'd do some work for him for free, or something, I don't know.) I don't know what the etiquette would be on that sort of thing. I could maybe ask my parents to spot me if it's a true emergency (I'm not sure if it is?) or if it was only going to be $100-200 (but I expect it's going to be a lot more than that.)
Any other helpful thoughts or suggestions? Thanks.