Tooth extraction chapter
Search RVC Website eMedia Review Main menu Help


Deciduous Dog Teeth

Extracted 704 showing long, slender root structure
Extracted 704 showing long, slender root structure


Rule of dental succession: Never have two teeth of the same type in the same place at the same time.

  • Failure to remove deciduous teeth when indicated can lead to malocclusions and orthodontic problems in later life. In extreme cases this may require early intervention (by 8-12 weeks of age) to have a reasonable chance of success. Significant retention is mostly a problem with canine and incisor teeth.

  • A mixed dentition may be present and this can make identification of teeth to be removed difficult. Radiographs may be needed to distinguish the permanent from the deciduous tooth. If in doubt - do not remove any teeth. Litigation commonly follows if mistakes are made. Seek advice from an appropriate specialist.
Severe class 2 malocclusion
Severe class 2 malocclusion. Note retained 704 and 604 causing lingual deviation of 304 & 204
Rostral mandibles showing both temporary and permanent dentition
Rostral mandibles showing both temporary and permanent dentition

Permanent teeth are normally lingual or palatal to their deciduous precursors. The exceptions are the permanent maxillary canine, which is rostral, and the permanent maxillary premolar 4, which is buccal and distal to the last deciduous tooth.


Take care - Deciduous teeth can be a challenge to remove and requires great care. They are easily fractured and remaining root tips may still deflect the erupting permanent tooth into a malocclusion.

Take care - Avoid over-vigorous deep elevation - this may cause permanent damage to the developing enamel on the crown of the succeeding permanent tooth. Be aware of the position of the permanent tooth (see above).

  1. The root tends to be long with a similar width for the whole of its length. Use a small root tip pick, Fahrenkrug elevator or fine luxator, depending on tooth size.

  2. Make sulcus incision as for single root tooth.

  3. Push/probe gently into the periodontal ligament space. If the space cannot be easily found consider a flap and/or create a channel for the instrument using a quarter or a half round bur.

  4. When haemorrhage occurs, pause to allow the hydraulic pressure of the blood to assist you in your task.

  5. Incise the periodontal ligament for the whole of the root length and apply forceps only when tooth is very loose.

  6. Close flap with sutures if necessary.


© 2002 eMedia Unit RVC v1.0



Printable chapter