Have you noticed your dog being unhappy when he needs to eat his kibble? Or have you noticed an unpleasant smell coming out of his mouth?
Have you heard about pulpitis in dogs and how much the treatment for it costs? If not, this is the right article for you!
What is pulpitis in dogs?
Dog’s teeth are built in the same way as our teeth. That means that the middle part of the tooth that keeps it alive is called “pulp”.
When the protection around it is damaged, it can become infected, which is a condition called pulpitis.
This is usually noticed with a slight change of color of the tooth itself. If this condition is caught on time, and the damage is not too great, the infection can be cured and the pulp can be saved.
However, in most cases, the dog may require something called a root canal treatment or extraction of the affected tooth.
What are the symptoms of pulpitis in dogs?
The tooth may change color which is due to bleeding inside the damaged pulp. Usually, owners may notice the tooth turning pinkish, gray, or black.
This most certainly causes some level of discomfort or pain for the dog, but most of the time dogs won’t show any signs of pain.
However, if the tooth is damaged to the length that the pulp is exposed, then the dog most certainly will be reluctant to take its regular meals.
Other signs that can point out that something is happening in the mouth is of course the bad odor that comes from the teeth.
Many times owners also notice that their dog drools more than usual too.
How is pulpitis diagnosed in dogs?
By now you know something is seriously wrong with your dog so you decide to take it to the vet. Or the vet dentist. No matter where you take the dog, the first thing they will see is the change of color of the affected tooth.
After the examination is done, the vet will do some dental x-rays, which could point out possible fractures or other changes to the pulp.
When the examination is done, the vet will deem the pulp damage either reversible or irreversible. The former means that the pulp is just damaged and is not dead, which means that the affected tooth can be saved.
Irreversible damage means that the pulp is already dead and the vet will either have to do a root canal to remove the dead pulp or remove the whole tooth itself.
How is pulpitis in dogs treated?
If the vet thinks that the pulp is not dead the first thing he will do is to try and remove the infected and damaged pulp from the tooth.
After that medication is administered with the purpose of protecting the exposed pulp and promoting new tissue growth.
In cases where the pulp is already dead and the damage is irreversible, the vet will do a root canal or remove the tooth.
Depending on whether you visit your local vet or you take your dog to a specialist, you should expect to pay between $500 and $1500.
It is generally recommended to seek a specialist because sometimes pulling out teeth can prove to be more difficult and could have some serious consequences if done wrongly.