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Root canal or extraction of upper canine

My 7 year old black lad/golden retriever mix snapped off her upper canine last week while being kenneled (she was trying to pull out of a chain link run during a thunderstorm - the tooth was already weakened from similar behavior a few years ago).

Vet dentist can either extract or do root canal (about $400 difference with another $400 for x-ray check in 6 months). The root canal would then have a filling, and tooth would be close to gum line.

I have mixed feelings about what to do.  It is a complicated extraction because of the tooth, but he has no reservations doing it (lots of experience).  So on one hand, I worry about that, and the fact the tooth is so darn big at the base. Will it affect her?  Root canals are more expensive, but if they fail (he claims 95% success rate), either another one has to be done, or the tooth has to go.

Anyone have any experience with this?  Her sister just had an incisors extracted by him two months ago (the teeth had been traumatized and died) with no problems, but that is such a small tooth in comparison.
6 Responses
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10821430 tn?1439580883
I had the same exact thing with one of my Greyhounds,
in fact my vet gave me the same options...we desided
that rather than have a root canal,and a possible ex-
traction of the tooth later,we just had our vet pull the tooth.
OF COURSE THIS WAS OUR CHOICE, I am not saying
this is what you should do. Greys do not handle regular
anesthetics and need a "special" anesthetic to be used on
them due to their low body fat BUT rather than have to root
canal and a risk of later extraction,putting her under again
in a short time we just had it removed.
One of our friends with another rescue Grey had the root
canal done and 6 months later did need to have the tooth
pulled,we thought what the heck,just pull it,it will heal and
Nicki will be over an done with it...on her dog the filling fell
out..
DOES NOT MEAN this will happen with your girl,the final
choice of what is best for you...is up to you,Greyhounds
are different as a breed,unlike a Golden/Lab.
Jan
Helpful - 0
974371 tn?1424653129
Glad your Vet explained the options and rate of success to you. I have had teeth extractions on dogs done and they did just fine.  What is standing out to me in your post is the fact the dog has had this behavior in the past meaning it is likely to do the same in the future.  
If this were a show dog, and have been there, owners will go to a lot of expense to save teeth but this is not the case.
If it were me, I would probably have it pulled and it sounds like you have faith in this Vet.  Since it is a Canine, I would just ask if he expects the teeth to shift and would the bite be affected.  
Difficult decision, I know.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
That is my concern - having to have it pulled down the road anyway.  I am pretty sure that is what I will do, just have the tooth extracted.  Thank you for your response!

Did you have any problem with the teeth shifting after it was pulled?
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
I did not ask the vet this time about teeth shifting, but I did earlier this summer when my other dog had an incisor removed.  His comment was that dogs don't live as long as humans, so any problems with teeth shifting is generally not an issue.  Have your dogs had problems with that? This is a bigger tooth, though, so I will ask him, but I am probably going to have it extracted anyway.  Thanks for your insight!
Helpful - 0
10821430 tn?1439580883
I don't remember there was a lot of shifting of Nicki's
teeth,she lived to be 14 years old,never had any kind
of problems with eating. After it healed she had no
problems chewing on the (full length) leg bones or
knuckle bones we gave her.( we raise our own beef
so dogs always have bones) Our frontyard looked
like they Greys had killed a buffalo or -T-Rex, we'd
pick up the older chewed bones,they got fresh ones
to knaw on as we always keep the bones in the
freezer, just took them out to thaw as needed.
Hope this helps.
Jan
Helpful - 0
974371 tn?1424653129
You know, it has been a long time.  I only say that because it is a Canine. Probably, since they are adult teeth, they won't shift.
With puppies it could be a concern if all the adult teeth are not in and the jaw is not done growing.
I would not expect any Problems chewing. Etc.
Helpful - 0
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