Knowing facts about your German Shepherd Dog is the best way to stay on top of his health. If you see something is amiss, you can tend to it sooner rather than later thanks to your education. One thing that might be often overlooked as no cause for concern are teeth. But have you wondered how many teeth your German Shepherd is supposed to have? And when?
How many teeth does a German Shepherd have? German Shepherd puppies have 28 teeth and German Shepherd adults have 42 teeth. As your German Shepherd puppy begins to grow, his baby teeth (also known as milk teeth) will begin to grow in at around four weeks old. The baby teeth will begin to fall out at 14 weeks and continue until around week 30 when he should have all of his adult teeth grown in.
There’s a lot that goes into the teething process of a German Shepherd, or any dog for that matter. We’re going to discuss how many teeth your GSD should have, and when, and also shed some light on how the teeth should look and how to properly care for them. At the end of this blog, you will be a German Shepherd tooth expert!
German Shepherd Puppy Teeth
Like every other dog, your German Shepherd puppy will be born without any teeth. This is so he can properly nurse off of his mother without harming her. German Shepherds grow up quickly and in only 4 short weeks he will start to grow in his baby teeth, which are also commonly referred to as ‘milk teeth’.
German Shepherd puppies will begin to grow in 24 baby teeth at around 4 weeks of age. Baby teeth are not supposed to last forever and are not designed to do so.
You will notice that the baby teeth begin to fall out at around 14 weeks of age. The baby teeth fall out to make room for the adult teeth.
Signs a German Shepherd is Teething
If you’re unsure whether or not your puppy is entering the teething stage there are many obvious signs. Once you see these signs you will know that it’s time for the adult teeth to start moving in. During this time you should try and get your GSD used to good oral habits, which we will go into further detail about later in this article.
Signs of teething in a German Shepherd include:
- The onset of swollen or bleeding gums.
- Excessive amounts of chewing, especially on toys or household items.
- An appetite that seems to have slowed down.
- An excessive amount of drooling not usual for your dog.
- Your puppy seems to be more agitated and aggressive than usual.
German Shepherd Adult Teeth
Starting at around 14 weeks old your GSD will begin to lose his baby teeth.
These baby teeth will be replaced by adult teeth for the upcoming weeks, and the teething process should continue until around 30 weeks of age.
At this point, your German Shepherd should have all 42 adult teeth in his mouth.
German Shepherd Teeth Appearance
A German Shepherd should have a set of 42 teeth that are strong and healthy.
This breed is also known for having a ‘scissor bite’.
What this means is that the incisors will lock up to form what looks like a pair of scissors. Therefore, the upper incisors should overlap the lower incisors properly to form this sort of scissor-like bite.
If you notice that your German Shepherd has an issue with occlusion, such as an overbite or gaps in the teeth, the dog’s teeth are faulty.
While this may not have an impact on his health or lifestyle, it’s still something you may want to get looked at by a veterinarian. You would hate to have your dog’s teeth getting in the way of him eating, chewing, etc.
Dental Health for a German Shepherd
As human beings, we take great care of our teeth. We make sure to brush at least twice a day, and if we are lucky and not too stubborn, floss every day too.
So why should it be any different for your German Shepherd?
Oral hygiene is just as important for you as it is for your German Shepherd, especially as they get older.
The first thing to keep in mind is that many dogs do not like having their mouths touched.
It’s an instinctual thing and your GSD is likely to be stubborn and feisty when you try and get near his mouth. This is normal and isn’t directly related to pain or any type of infection or discomfort.
So what can you as the pet owner do?
The best thing to do is to get your GSD used to having someone look at and touch his mouth at a very young age. In fact, the second you notice the baby teeth start to grow in your dog’s mouth is a great time to start introducing touching to the mouth and teeth.
Don’t start with anything drastic.
Simply run your fingers across his lips and massage the gum and tooth area.
This will not only help him during the daunting teething process but will also get him used to someone being inside of his mouth. A gentle massage or run of the finger is all that’s needed.
You don’t need to worry about extensive cleaning.
Tips for German Shepherd Teeth Brushing
As he gets older, follow these guidelines for keeping your German Shepherd’s mouth clean and healthy:
1. Brush your dog’s teeth regularly
This doesn’t need to be done every day, although you should if you can. At least two to three times a week is ideal.
Never brush your dog’s teeth with human toothpaste.
Make sure you buy specialty toothpaste designed for dogs and use a child’s toothbrush for cleaning.
2. Pay attention to the back and upper teeth
There are 42 teeth to be concerned about, which can be overwhelming!
Don’t worry yourself with reaching the inside of the teeth, as that area tends to stay clean and protected. Instead, focus on the front of the teeth, especially the back and upper ones.
3. Use chewy bone treats
These can help your dog’s oral health in a number of different ways.
Firstly, they are a great way to aid in keeping your German Shepherd’s teeth clean throughout the day. However, they also actively massage the gums and give your dog’s jaw a good exercise.
4. Serve dry food
It’s important to buy hard food for your German Shepherd. The dryness will act as an abrasive remedy to knock off excess tartar and plaque.
Remember that you should always buy food that is specially made for a German Shepherd-size dog to keep them healthy and strong.
5. Consider dental chew toys
Why settle for any old, regular chew toy, when you can opt for one that is going to clean your dog’s teeth while he has tons of fun?
There are a whole lot of dental chew toys available on the market, but if you want to stick to the basics, a good rope toy always does the trick.
Your German Shepherd will start off without teeth, but will quickly grow in his first set of 24 baby teeth. Soon after, these teeth will fall out to make room for the 42 teeth that every adult German Shepherd should have. Keep in mind that oral hygiene is important to keep these teeth healthy and strong.
Yes. It’s not uncommon for there to be a little bit of bleeding when your puppy is teething and losing their baby teeth. It’s not noticeable, though, unless you see a bit on your dog’s chew toy.
Yes, there is some pain related to teething. The gums may hurt and your puppy will find anything to chew on to find some relief.