What should I watch after my dogs tooth extraction?

Answered by Randy McIntyre

After your dog’s tooth extraction, it is essential to pay close attention to their diet to ensure their mouth heals properly. The extracted area is essentially a wound that needs time to close, so it’s crucial to be cautious with their food choices. Here are some things to consider and watch for during their recovery:

1. Soft and Moist Food: To avoid any unnecessary strain on the healing area, opt for soft and moist food options. Wet dog food, canned food, or homemade meals that are easily chewable can be ideal. You can even add some warm water to their dry kibble to soften it up. The goal is to make sure they can eat comfortably without putting too much pressure on their mouth.

2. Avoid Hard and Crunchy Food: Hard and crunchy foods, such as kibble, bones, or chew toys, should be completely avoided during the healing process. These types of food can cause pain and potential damage to the extraction site. It’s best to stick to a diet that consists of softer textures until your dog has fully recovered.

3. Small Bite Sizes: Even with soft food, it may still be challenging for your dog to chew larger pieces. To make it easier for them, consider cutting their food into small, bite-sized pieces. This will reduce the effort required for chewing and prevent any strain on the healing area.

4. Monitor Eating Behavior: Keep a close eye on how your dog eats after the tooth extraction. If you notice any signs of discomfort, such as whining, reluctance to eat, or excessive drooling, it’s essential to contact your veterinarian. They may need to adjust the pain medication or evaluate the healing process.

5. Gradual Transition: As your dog starts to heal, you can gradually transition them back to their regular diet. Start by introducing small amounts of their regular dry kibble mixed with the softer food. Slowly increase the amount of kibble while monitoring their comfort level. If they show any signs of difficulty or pain, revert to a softer diet and consult your vet.

6. Maintain Oral Hygiene: While your dog is recovering from the tooth extraction, it’s crucial to maintain good oral hygiene. Gently wipe their mouth with a clean cloth or gauze after each meal to remove any food debris that could cause infection or irritation.

7. Follow Veterinarian’s Instructions: Your veterinarian will provide specific post-operative instructions based on your dog’s individual case. It’s essential to follow these instructions diligently to ensure a smooth recovery. This may include administering any prescribed medications, scheduling follow-up appointments, or adjusting their diet as necessary.

Remember, every dog’s recovery may vary, so it’s crucial to monitor your dog closely and consult your veterinarian if you have any concerns or questions. With proper care and attention to their diet, your dog will be on their way to a healthy and comfortable recovery.