Teething is something parents dread but is it as bad for puppies as it is for kids? And when do lab puppies lose their baby teeth and how to manage the situation? Are puppies in pain, do they chew a lot during teething? In short – what do you need to know and do when your puppy is teething?
Let’s go over all these questions one by one below.
When Do Lab Puppies Lose Their Baby Teeth?
The short answer? Around and after their 4th month. Some puppies will lose almost all their baby teeth shortly after the start of the 4th month and others will lose them continuously and slowly between the 4th and 8th months. Both cases are perfectly fine and you shouldn’t worry if your pup’s baby teeth fall out slower than you might have expected. Of course, if you’re worried and/or if your pup still has baby teeth after the 8th month, you should consult with your vet.
A Teething Timeline
To give you a bit more detailed and visual idea of your pup’s teething timeline, this is how things should happen. Again, there are variations from pup to pup so don’t be too shocked if your pup is a week early or late.
|Birth||3 weeks||6 weeks||8 weeks||3 months||4 months||6 months||8 months|
|No teeth||Baby teeth start coming out||Most baby teeth are already out||All baby teeth are out||The puppy starts absorbing the roots of its baby teeth||Baby teeth start loosening and falling out||All baby teeth should have fallen and most of them – replaced with adult teeth||Your dog should have a full set of adult teeth|
How Many Teeth Do Labradors Have?
Adult labs have a healthy set of 42 teeth – ten more than people have. This is quite nice for a pet dog as many modern breeds, especially those with shorter muzzles, don’t have a full set of 42 teeth.
How Many Teeth Do Lab Puppies Have?
Lab puppies have only 28 baby teeth as they don’t have molars at this stage yet. So, if you’ve read online that a lab should have 42 teeth, don’t worry about your pet not having even thirty.
Which Teeth Do Puppies Lose?
All of them. Not a single of your pup’s baby teeth is going to remain after the 8th month and “turn” into an adult tooth. As with humans, baby teeth are softer and weaker than adult teeth so they are just not suitable for chewing on kibble, treats, bones, (your furniture), and other things.
Learn more about Why Do Dogs Have Black Spots On Their Tongues And Is It Dangerous?
How To Deal With Nipping and Chewing?
Now that we know when do lab puppies lose their baby teeth, the next big question is chewing. Just like teething human babies, teething puppies also love to put everything they can find in their mouths. This can be unfortunate for your furniture and slightly painful for your arms. There are easy ways to train a puppy against nipping, mouthing, and biting, however, so all you need is a bit of patience and persistence. And a lot of chew toys.
Toys For Teething Puppies
The main trick to preventing your pup from biting things you don’t want it to bite is to offer enough tempting alternatives. These can include:
- All sorts of plastic chewable toys
- Edible or non-edible flavored synthetic bones
- Treat dispensing balls and other toys
- Plush toys
- Rope chews
- Rubber rings
- Standard plastic balls and toys
Learn more about: The Best Toy For Lab Puppy – Here Are 31 Amazing Ideas
Do Labs Have Trouble and Pain When They Are Teething?
Labs certainly experience teething differently than human babies. While their teeth and gums still get itchy from the experience and they need to “scratch” them by chewing stuff, their gums don’t really hurt and cause them pain. So, your pup isn’t going to start whining out of pain in the middle of the night. It will look for things to chew, however – we’ll go over that problem in a bit.
Another question that often arises is whether dogs’ teeth can grow out crooked the way humans’ teeth can. With us, this happens because our jaws are shorter and so our teeth are more densely packed. Thus, when the adult teeth start growing out, there sometimes isn’t enough space for them and they start going out in weird directions.
This is indeed a problem for some breeds but not the Labrador. Labs have long enough muzzles and jaws that there’s plenty of space for all 42 of their adult teeth. In fact, sometimes there even are rather sizable gaps between some of the molars. That’s normal, of course, so do worry.
Granted, some jaw misalignment is possible. Typically, dog teeth should be arranged in a “scissor bite” with the bottom teeth fitting nicely behind and between the top teeth. In rare cases, a pup’s teeth may be slightly misaligned or there can be a slight overbite. This only really is a problem for working dogs and for show dogs, however. So, if you just want a nice and happy pet, this shouldn’t be an issue – your dog will still be able to eat any type of dog food you give it and it won’t experience any significant discomfort.
The unpleasant types of misalignments are extremely rare. They will typically be spotted by your vet and he or she will tell you what to do.
So, Do You Need To Keep Track For When Do Lab Puppies Lose Their Baby Teeth?
Not really. During the puppy stages of your dog’s age, you should be taking it to the vet relatively often anyway and vets know to always check the teething progress. So, at most, you might want to give your dog’s teeth a look or two between the 4th and 8th months – that’s all. There is no need to daily check for when do lab puppies lose their teeth.
Knowing at what age do puppies lose teeth can hypothetically give you an idea for when you can expect them to start chewing stuff and when you need to get them extra chew toys. However, even if you don’t know the exact age range, you should always make sure that your dog has plenty of toys for chewing and other types of playtime.
So, just get your dog plenty of chew toys, go to your routine vet check-ups, and, in the meantime – sit back and enjoy the puppy show.