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Do Dachshunds Have Bad Teeth? Top Indicators + 6 Tips

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Many dachshund owners notice that their pup has pretty bad teeth. If you’ve taken a look at your dog’s mouth and thought their teeth were in bad shape you might be concerned.

Does the dachshund breed simply have bad teeth? Or is my pup’s mouth unhealthy?

Do Dachshunds Have Bad Teeth?

Dachshunds are more prone to having bad teeth then other breeds. This is largely due to the fact they have so many teeth in such a small space relative to larger breeds. Also, many dachshund owners neglect to brush their teeth which, when done regularly, would help to maintain healthy oral hygiene.

In this post you’ll discover the most common indicators of bad teeth your dachshund might be experiencing, the best ways to ensure your dachshund doesn’t have bad teeth (#4 is hands-down the most important), as well as what health issues can arise from poor oral hygiene.

Let’s jump right into it.

Top Indicators Your Dachshund Has Bad Teeth

1) Bloody Mouth

Bad teeth are not isolated from the rest of your dachshund’s mouth. If they have bad teeth, odds are their gums and possibly their tongue won’t be the best shape either.

If you notice blood in their saliva or that they have inflamed, bloody gums, their oral health is in need of improvement.

You may not be checking their mouth very often so places where you would notice if their mouth was bloody is in their food or water bowl as well as their chew toys.

If it’s not a cut in your dog’s mouth that’s causing the blood and is in fact because their oral health is poor, it’s important to take them to the vet.

2) Bad Breath

Bad breath is one of the more obvious indicators that your dachshund’s teeth might be in bad shape.

Bad breath is a sign of poor oral hygiene, and in many cases, periodontal disease.

Their bad breath can be a result of simply too many days without cleaning or if the smell is really bad it could be infection or disease.

This is because bacteria (plaque and tartar) builds up in their mouth which results in an off-putting smell if left alone for too long.

Here are a few others reasons why your dachshund has bad breath:

  • Plaque buildup
  • Gum disease
  • Underlying health condition, such as kidney disease or diabetes
  • Eating a lot of smelly things
  • Dog isn’t feeling well

Related Reading: 5 Reasons Why Your Dachshund Has Bad Breath + 3 Tips

3) Discoloration

do dachshunds have bad teeth

A mouth that’s in poor condition will have some discoloration in their teeth, gums and possibly their tongue.

If you notice your dachshunds’ teeth are a variety of different shades of yellow or brown, they have a bad teeth situation that needs to be improved for their overall health.

The discoloration of their teeth comes from tartar buildup.

Which is bacteria that hasn’t been washed away in far too long.

Also, gums that aren’t a salmon pink color are typically the result of poor oral hygiene and accompanied by bad teeth. Same with their tongue.

Some dogs are born with black spots on their gums which isn’t an issue, it’s just a pigment difference.

However, if they weren’t born with black gums and you’re noticing black colored gums on your pup now, this is likely a sign that something’s wrong.

If your dog’s gum and tongue discoloration is new, there’s a good chance they have bad teeth as well that need better care.

4) They’re Loose

If your dachshund’s teeth are loose, that’s a good sign that they’re not healthy.

Healthy teeth are firmly in place and won’t wiggle when touched.

Outside of puppy teeth, your dachshunds adult teeth shouldn’t be loose.

If you notice their teeth are loose, it’s best to take them to the vet to figure out what’s going on.

How To Prevent a Dachshund From Getting Bad Teeth

1) Use Toys That Help Clean Teeth

Some toys are designed with grooves that help massage a dog’s teeth and gums to prevent buildup of plaque and tartar.

These kinds of toys work as a self-cleaning device that your dog can benefit from while enjoying playtime.

It’s important to note that these toys don’t act as a substitute for regular oral cleaning though.

They can help your dachshund keep their teeth and mouth cleaner in between brushings, but by no means are a complete solution.

do dachshunds have bad teeth

2) Dental Treats

Dental treats serve a similar purpose as toys except these can be swallowed by your pup.

Some dental treats can completely take care of your dachshunds mouth for the most part.

The only downside is they would need to have one of these dental treats everyday to keep their teeth and overall mouth clean and healthy.

So this can add up when they need 365 of them each year.

Even if you do get dental treats, it’s still a good idea to brush every once and a while. Not only does this make sure every spot gets taken care of but you also get to do an inspection to see if everything looks alright.

The best dental chews are Dentastix or Greenies.

3) Water Additive

Using a water additive is another low maintenance way to keep your dachshunds teeth and mouth healthier.

You simply add it to their water bowl and as they drink their water, the additive works its magic to clean their mouth.

They’re sort of like mouthwash for dogs. They help keep plaque and tartar buildup under control as they drink throughout the day.

The best water additive is this Fresh Dental Water Additive.

4) Brush Them Often

The least popular way, but the most likely to ensure your dachshund doesn’t have bad teeth is to roll up your sleeves and brush them.

And brush them often.

There’s a reason why people are told to brush their teeth in the morning and at night EVERYDAY.

Because it’s necessary to maintain good oral hygiene.

And to help make sure your pup doesn’t get periodontal disease, brushing their teeth often is highly encouraged.

They eat food everyday just like you except they are probably missing the daily tooth brushing that you give yourself.

If you never brushed your own teeth you can only imagine how your own teeth would look/feel.

It should come to no surprise that your dachshund has bad teeth if their mouth isn’t brushed or maintained often.

5) Regular Vet Check-Ups

Most people only go to the vet when there’s something wrong. Which isn’t the best way to use them.

Being reactive with your vet visits as opposed to proactive is a sure fire way of making each vet visit an expensive one.

If you regularly check in with your vet to have your dachshund looked at, their teeth will likely never get so bad that serious problems arise.

This is because when your vet notices their teeth are going in a bad direction they’ll advise you on how to help them.

This means their teeth (and overall health) should stay in good shape so long as you follow their advice.

6) Pay For Dental Cleanings

Look I get it, brushing your dachshunds teeth is not a fun job.

Some pups are completely fine with the brushing sessions while others are fussy bums.

If your dachshund doesn’t make it easy on you to brush their teeth, paying for dental cleanings is always an option.

The worst thing you can do is do nothing when it comes to their teeth. If their oral hygiene is left unchecked for too long it can create health related issues outside of their mouth.

do dachshunds have bad teeth

If your dachshund has bad teeth, their overall health and wellbeing is at risk. Bad teeth don’t simply produce bad breath, they can also impact vital organs in your dog.

If a dachshunds teeth are left for too long without cleaning or treatment, certain health related problems can arise, such as:

Heart Disease

If your dachshund has a severe case of bad teeth, like a dental disease, it can cause inflammation to their heart and/or liver.

A veterinarian at PetMD shares that it’s quite common for a dog that has periodontal disease to also have heart disease.

And that a dog is 6 times more at risk to develop a certain heart disease (endocarditis) if their periodontal disease reaches a late enough stage.


When it comes to diabetes, vets still have trouble determining if the bad teeth caused the diabetes or the diabetes caused the bad teeth.

What they do know though is that a dog’s diabetes isn’t easily balanced until their periodontal disease is treated.

Teeth that have been left to develop periodontal disease are linked to affecting blood-sugar metabolism in a dog. 

Which in turn makes managing diabetic symptoms difficult for your dachshund’s body, as well as for a vet to help treat it.

Triggers Their Immune System

When bacteria builds up and becomes plaque in a dachshund’s mouth it creates inflammation.

Inflammation is their body’s response to fight off the bacteria, but it also damages tissue in their gums in the process.

When this happens, bacteria can enter their blood which brings it’s negative effects to different parts of their body.

If they didn’t have bad teeth, their immune system wouldn’t flare up which means their gum tissue would remain strong. Which also means bacteria wouldn’t spread and cause problems elsewhere.

Broken Jaw

Poor oral hygiene can even result in a broken jaw.

And unfortunately, smaller dogs like your dachshund are more susceptible to this because their teeth are disproportionately large in comparison to the size of their mouth.

Because their jaw bones are quite small, infections in their mouth can weaken the bone to the point where a fracture can happen from seemingly simple movements. Like jumping off the couch or fast stair climbing.

And this kind of injury isn’t easy to heal either as the bone isn’t healthy.

Final Thoughts

Bad teeth are quite simple to avoid. Simple, but not easy.

Regular brushing is the best way to ensure your dachshunds teeth don’t get to a bad spot where side effects start showing up.

If your dachshund does have noticeably bad teeth it’s important to take them to the vet.

Other posts you might find interesting:

12 Best Dog Beds for Dachshunds

Why Does My Dachshund Yawn So Much? 9 Reasons + 5 Tips

Why Is My Dachshund Getting So Fat? Top 6 Reasons + Tips

8 Surprising Reasons Why Dachshunds Sleep So Much


5 Scary Consequences of Neglecting Your Dog’s Teeth