The Sonia Show

Writer. Mocker. Beer drinker. Old movie watcher. Mother. Goober.

Do they make dentures for dogs?


Yeah, so, remember how I didn’t go to the dentist for a long time, and now I have to get all this dental work? Well, it turns out I’m not on the only one in this house with a jacked up set of teeth that require expensive dental work.

A few months ago Homer started making this strange sound, kinda like he was coughing up a hairball, but after a few seconds it was over, and he would act like nothing ever happened, and we didn’t want to be rude so we humored him.

We finally decided to get it looked at. Homer’s vet is in Concord, so we hauled our asses out there for the appointment. Why is Homer’s vet in Concord, when I live in San Francisco? Good question. Homer’s vet is in Concord, because, well, that’s where his vet is. We like this vet and trust that this vet won’t rip us off, and my brother takes his dogs to this vet, and go to hell, that’s why! Gawd! Stop judging me!

So anyway, the vet told us that Homer had some abscessed teeth and that was causing the weird coughing fits. We scheduled a cleaning, but the only appointment we could get was Wednesday. What the hell, I thought, I’ll make a day of it. I took the day off from work. Calvin took the day off from baby work. And, we headed into Concord. We dropped Homer off at the vet, and The Boy and I spent the day with my parents. We went to the park and strolled around the neighborhood. I also took the car into get serviced, and made my parents shuttle me around.

In the afternoon, the vet called me to tell me that they have Homer “under” right now, and his mouth is worse than they thought. He had — wait for it — 14 (!) teeth that were infected/rotten/abscessed and they needed to be removed.

I started freaking out. “Will he be able to eat? 14?! Are you sure?!” The vet assured me that Homer would still be able to eat, and that this was the best thing for Homer. His teeth were rotten, so I said go ahead.

Immediately after the call I googled, “dachshund number of teeth.” It turns out they have 42 teeth. Who knew?

As the day progressed, my anxiety about Homer increased. I started panicking, feeling maybe he wasn’t going to be OK. Homer is 11 years old. Maybe he won’t recover from oral surgery. What if he doesn’t wake up for the anesthesia? Oh, and yeah, I was feeling like a horrible dog owner, because my dog basically has a rotten, infected mouth, because I never brushed his teeth. I mentioned this to my dad.

The Man: “Sonia, how many dogs have we had? Have we EVER brushed their teeth? That’s some bullshit right there. Dogs get older, and they lose their teeth. It happens.”

I still feel guilty, but when I look at the situation logically, The Man is right. I’ve never been told to brush my dog’s teeth. I give him Greenies and Milk Bones, which I have been told are great for their teeth. False! Don’t believe me? Come over some night and let Homer tell you about his teeth over a bowl of soup.

At 5:30, Homer was ready to be picked up. And, even though they had called me and told me that Homer was fine, I was freaking out in the waiting area. Every time a nurse walked through the doors, I was convinced she was there to tell me that Homer didn’t wake up.

Then they brought us into a back room. Anxiety levels were really high at this point. Finally, a nurse brought Homer in, and I almost started crying.

Me: “Oh, Homer! I’m so sorry this happened to you.”

And then Homer sneezed blood all over my face.

I know, right?

Some of the infected teeth were right under the nasal cavity, so Homer’s nose might get a little bloody from time to time for a few weeks. The more you know. You’re welcome.

So, if anyone is looking for good pain meds, Homer can hook you up. He’s got a stash of the good stuff for the next 14 days. He’s also going to get a steady diet of canned food instead of kibble. Oh la la. I’m thinking about making Homer’s food for him while he recovers. I mean, I’m already making Calvin’s food. I can mush up a little more and cut up food into little pieces for the both of them. Ain’t no thang.

Right now, he is sleeping at the foot of my bed, after eating a bowl of mashed potatoes, I haven’t gotten a good look into Homer’s mouth. Just a few glimpses here and there. He’s obviously going to have a jack-o-lantern smile, though. Poor little guy. But he’s been in a really good spirits for someone who had 14 teeth extracted. It must be the pain meds, right?



Author: The Sonia Show

I'm a writer/podcaster/mother/goober in San Francisco who likes to drink beer, shop, laugh and make other people laugh, watch old movies, feed my unhealthy obsession with pop culture, kick breast cancer's ass, go on adventures with my mighty, mighty good man David and my awesome autistic son, Calvin, wear orange and root for the San Francisco Giants, participate in general jackass-ery, talk about TV, eavesdrop on strangers' conversations, make nerdy “Star Wars” and “Simpsons” references, and post personal things about myself on the web for all to read, which makes me some sort of literary exhibitionist.

9 thoughts on “Do they make dentures for dogs?

  1. Blue Cross Pet Hospital in Alamo Square is a great vet facility. Dr. Wong is the best and hus staff is great. i highly recommend it.

  2. I was so worried about Homer too, just love the little guy..but I am glad he is on the road to recovery…He is one tuff dude, I’m sure I wouldn’t be doing as well if it were me…

  3. I feel Homer’s pain. Our dog had to get his lower front 4 teeth pulled about 2 years ago. Now his tongue slightly sticks out a little when he’s sleeping. It’s pretty cute, actually. So, in conclusion, there is a silver lining.

    • It’s pretty cute when dogs sleep with a little piece of tongue hanging out. We always say, “Oh, someone has a little piece of ham sticking out of his mouth.” Now that there are less teeth in the way, I assume we will see more tongue.

  4. Pingback: Go to your happy place | The Sonia Show

  5. Sent this to my niece, who just went through exactly the same thing with her sossige. It really helped — assuaged her guilt — and she said the same thing happened to her — her little one sneezed blood. So thanks to you she feels better.

  6. I’m so glad I could help. 🙂 I hope you little dog feels better.

  7. Thank you so much for this article. We went through a similar experience with our darling Bichon Frise today. Poor little guy had to have about 24 teeth extracted. Like you, I was feeling so guilty due to the advanced gum disease. Your dad’s advice helped me, though, to let go! Our little Maxie also experiences the strange coughing that you described. I hope the dental surgery addresses that. At any rate, the sharing of your story helped ease my day. It is wonderful knowing we are not alone in these experiences. Again, thank you.

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