8 Breeds Prone to Dental Disease
By Paula Fitzsimmons
Dental disease is serious business. It affects not only a dog’s teeth and gums, but also can cause infection and ultimately result in organ failure, if left untreated. Periodontal disease is the most prevalent disease in all dogs, but some breeds are at higher risk, says Dr. Donald Beebe, a veterinarian with Apex Dog and Cat Dentistry in Englewood, Colorado.
Knowing which diseases your canine companion is prone to can help you provide the optimal care he deserves. “Just as it’s important for you to know what your family’s medical history is, you need to understand how your dog’s genes may contribute to his or her health,” explains Dr. Laura LeVan, founder of the Veterinary Dental Education Center in Concord, Massachusetts.
And if you’re thinking of adopting a small breed, be prepared for more trips to the vet. “With small breeds—generally anyone shorter than knee height—periodontal disease is a huge problem,” says Dr. Donnell Hansen, a veterinarian with BluePearl Veterinary Partners in Blaine, Minnesota.
Pet parents should bring their dog to the vet for regular dental checkups and cleanings, and practice at-home oral hygiene, regardless of their dog’s breed. But some dogs, particularly smaller breeds, are at a higher risk of developing periodontal disease. Here are eight dog breeds you should be extra diligent with.