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17 Week Lab w/ Overbite

Published on: February 08, 2022 • By: Hannah Peterson · In Forum: Puppies
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Hannah Peterson
Participant
February 08, 2022 at 09:42pm
Hello, this is Charlie and she is a beautiful pure bred, Labrador! I absolutely adore her, but I’m feeling discouraged… I discovered a few weeks ago that she has an overbite. I had her at the vet and they sent me to a dental specialist who said it’s not as severe as some, but definitely something that needs to be taken care of. They suggested starting by extracting the bottom canines (as they are puncturing the roof of her mouth ) and then reevaluating once her adults start coming in. Their quote was a bit out of my price range, so I did a bit of looking around at other vets willing to pull them. I found some that are willing to, but all of them are saying it doesn’t make sense to since she’s almost 18 weeks old and is loosing teeth already and her canines are going to be falling out soon. They all have said it could cause trauma to her jaw and it would be better to wait. So now I’m confused, am I doing the wrong thing by waiting for them to come out? Are they going to do a ton more damage while they’re there and eliminate any chance of the jaw growing more? Or would it be the wrong thing to pull them with so much liability/possibilities to cause trauma and future problems? Any advice welcome! I’m beyond stressed about it!
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Liz Buchanan BVSc MRCVS
Moderator
February 08, 2022 at 10:38pm
Hi - Can you imagine the pain involved if your teeth punctured the soft tissue opposite every time you opened or closed your mouth?  I think that even a few weeks of that - and any associated gum damage or infection - might well be worth preventing!  Furthermore, I think that any existing teeth may influence the teeth coming up from below, so that's worth asking your specialist about.  Having consulted a dental expert - who by definition has far more knowledge than most GPs including myself - I wonder what puts your GP off following that advice?  I wonder if your vet is concerned about performing the anaesthetic?  I wonder what the dental vet says about your GP vets' concerns?  I feel as though they ought to speak to one another, or your vets concerns should be put to the specialist, as it is unhelpful for you that they do not have a unanimous decision.
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Liz Buchanan BVSc MRCVS
Moderator
February 08, 2022 at 10:49pm
Obviously this does happen sometimes; that professionals do not agree.  It is possible that the dentist is simply more familiar with anaesthetising pups for dental work (perhaps they have a very skilled anaesthetist, explaining the cost?) and would advocate it for the benefit of the mouth changes,  where as your GP is not in the habit of doing this and is therefore alarmed by the concept of anaesthetising such a young dog.  However this is conjuncture from someone who doesn't know the case.  I think in your position I would press them both on the pros and cons of the issue, in order to help you to make up your mind.
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