When Do Puppies Lose Baby Teeth? The Full Timeline

Written by Austin S.
Updated: January 11, 2023
© Valeriy Volkonskiy/Shutterstock.com
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Most mammals are born without teeth. This phenomenon is because their primary source of nutrition during the initial weeks of life is the mother’s milk. 

Dogs are no different. When it comes to caring for a puppy, there’s a lot to consider and keep track of. These caring activities include feeding, walking, training, playtime, etc. As you engage in the above listed, you might ignore caring for the dog’s teeth.

Though puppy teething is natural, it is always best to know what to expect. Thus, it is best to pay regular visits to the veterinary doctor for a proper check-up. This article will discuss how long it can take and how to care for a teething puppy. This article will also recommend relevant products and practices for a healthier puppy.

puppy teething
Teething is a natural process all puppies go through.


When Do Puppies Start Growing Teeth?

A puppy’s first set of teeth appears two weeks after birth. These teeth are called the deciduous, milk, or baby teeth. Canines and premolars follow this, and then the complete set of teeth. Puppies get a full set of 28 teeth 8 to 10 weeks after birth. This development shows that the puppy is ready to start taking solid foods.

How Many Teeth Do Puppies Grow?

Puppies grow a set of 28 sharp teeth at two weeks old. As the puppy grows, this is replaced by a complete set of 42 adult teeth. This development comes after the teething process has run its course. Though they’re puppies, these teeth are quite sharp enough to help a naughty puppy wreak some havoc.

When Do Puppies Start Losing Teeth?

Puppies are like people in how they grow and lose their baby teeth and grow adult teeth. The timing of the experience does differ. The milk teeth or needle teeth eventually give place to permanent adult teeth. 

Breed-specific timing varies. Some smaller breeds keep their baby teeth longer. Most dogs will have swapped their initial set of teeth for 42 permanent adult teeth by the time they are 7 to 8 months old. Your puppy will appear to be teething all of the time. This phenomenon is because dogs go through two sets of teeth in such a short time. So make sure you have lots of soft, flexible, puppy-safe items for your dog to chew on.

adult dog
Dogs gain most of their adult teeth around 7 to 8 months old.

©Maya Shustov/Shutterstock.com

A Timeline of Puppy Teething

Puppy teething is a process that takes time. During this process, puppies lose their baby teeth to create space for adult teeth. This process can last for up to six months. The following timeline will present details of how this process flows. Understanding these processes will help you know when your puppy is teething and what stage they’re at.

2 – 4 Weeks

At this point, the puppy’s eyes will be open. Still attached to its mother, the baby teeth start growing. The complete set of 28 does not fully grow at this point.

5 – 6 Weeks

At this point, the puppy has grown the complete set of 28 teeth. This development indicates that the puppy has outgrown a strict milk diet. Puppies can be introduced to soft puppy food or solids at this stage. It is important to remember that it’s still a puppy, and these are just the first set of teeth, not the final.

12 – 16 Weeks

At this point, the puppy either goes home with you or can go to its new owner’s home. The puppy starts to shed the baby teeth to allow the adult teeth to grow. Do not be surprised when you see tiny-sized teeth at random places in your home. As with most mammals, this can be a painful process. Providing the puppy with soft toys to chew on will help it through this phase.

puppy with soft chew toyu
A soft chew toy is a great way to comfort your teething puppy.

©Jolanta Beinarovica/Shutterstock.com

As stated earlier, your vet should be a close contact during this period. The vet should check the dog’s teeth to ensure things are going according to plan. You can also start touching your puppy’s mouth at this stage. Whether inside or outside the mouth, be careful not to get nipped. This warning is because the baby’s teeth are sharp enough to cause some damage. This interaction will help prepare the puppy for teeth care like brushing.

6 Weeks

At this point, all of the baby teeth will be gone. The complete set of 42 adult teeth will have grown to replace them. Any baby teeth still left behind should be reported to the veterinary doctor as soon as possible. This is because it can cause discomfort and pain for the dog.

When Do Puppies Get Their Permanent Teeth?

Puppies go through a six-month period of teething, which ends with the growth of 42 adult teeth. Dogs grow their different sets of teeth during this period. 

Puppy’s AgeStage of Permanent Teeth Development
3 to 5 weeksBaby incisors start to grow
4 to 5 weeksBaby canines start to grow
5 to 6 weeksBaby premolars start to grow
12 to 13 weeksThe process of losing baby teeth for adult teeth begins
2 to 5 monthsAdult incisors start to grow
4 to 6 monthsAdult premolars start to grow
5 to 7 monthsAdult canines and molars start to grow

Symptoms of a Teething Puppy

Some symptoms puppies exhibit when they start teething include:

Red/Swollen Gums

Your puppy can start to develop swelling on their gums as they start to grow adult teeth. This happens at the phase when your puppy starts growing their complete set of adult teeth.

Discomfort and Pain

As stated earlier, it is a painful process. As we know, pressure reduces pain in sore muscles, which also applies to dogs. Your puppy is not only probing the environment with its teeth, but it’s also sensitive to its teething process.

Increased Chewing

Your puppy chews and bites more when the puppy teeth start falling out. Sometimes, you might notice a drop or two of blood on your puppy’s toy or plate. This is a sign that your puppy is teething.


You might notice your puppy not wanting to eat or play. This indicates that a visit to the veterinarian is due as soon as possible. This can be an indication of the teething process, but it is best to be sure it is not a medical issue.

Caring for a Teething Puppy

There isn’t much of an issue if your puppy is still eating, drinking, socializing, grooming, and exploring on a regular basis. Your puppy may need to see the veterinarian if they aren’t performing any of these activities. Also, the pain or discomfort is harming its quality of life. 

During this period, there isn’t much for the owners to do. The best thing to do is to provide decent, safe chews for the dog to teethe on. Look for soft, flexible dog teething toys that bend readily in your palm. If it’s too difficult to bend, flex, or break, it’s too difficult to offer to your puppy,

How the Dog Breed Affects Teething

Smaller breed dogs are prone to retained deciduous teeth, a disease in which the puppy teeth are shed late or never at all. Such dog breeds include Chihuahuas and Yorkshire Terriers. Malocclusions, or crooked teeth, can result from retained baby teeth. It is wrong to have two teeth in the same place. 

yorkshie terrier
Small breeds like Chihuahuas and Yorkshire Terriers are prone to retaining their baby teeth for extended periods of time.

©Anna Vasiljeva/Shutterstock.com

The teething process should be completed at about six months of age, and any missing, misshaped, or irregularly positioned teeth should be checked. Impact teeth and atypical bites (malocclusions) may be a significant concern. They’re a lot simpler to manage and treat if identified early. 

This is why it’s essential to pay attention to your puppy’s needs and visit the veterinarian when unclear on what to do.

How to Keep Your Puppy’s Teeth Healthy

Dogs also get food items lodged between their teeth. Unfortunately, they’re not intelligent enough to dislodge them with their tongues. Issues like this can lead to plaque in their mouths. This development can cause their breath to stink and can cause medical issues where periodontal disease happens. Brushing your puppy’s teeth regularly can prevent these from happening. 

Now that your puppy has a complete set of adult teeth, keeping them healthy becomes the next priority. 

Brushing your puppy’s teeth will reduce the need for cleaning at the vet. You can start with a gentle scrub using a gauze pad or a finger brush. Eventually, you’d change to a toothbrush and canine toothpaste. 

human brushing her dog's teeth
Brushing your dog’s teeth is a good way to reduce trips to the vet.

©Aquarius Studio/Shutterstock.com

It is essential that the toothbrush is soft and the toothpaste is dog friendly or made for canines. Do not use toothpaste made for humans, as this can upset your puppy’s stomach when it’s swallowed. You can make a paste with baking soda and water.

You can also reduce plaque in your puppy’s mouth by trying some types of foods, treats, and products. Products that come with a Veterinary Oral Health Council seal of approval are best. As stated earlier, soft chewing toys can also help keep your puppy’s teeth healthy.


Caring for your puppy’s teeth starts from the moment they’re born. Now that you know what it entails, you can prepare for the teething process. This preparation also includes having a go-to veterinary doctor. Look out for signs of your dog teething and act fast in getting it the care it needs.

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The Featured Image

puppy yawnin
© Valeriy Volkonskiy/Shutterstock.com

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About the Author

Growing up in rural New England on a small scale farm gave me a lifelong passion for animals. I love learning about new wild animal species, habitats, animal evolutions, dogs, cats, and more. I've always been surrounded by pets and believe the best dog and best cat products are important to keeping our animals happy and healthy. It's my mission to help you learn more about wild animals, and how to care for your pets better with carefully reviewed products.

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