Did you know that French bulldog puppies sometimes swallow their baby teeth while eating? And, no. It doesn’t harm them. If you’re observant enough, you might even spot the baby teeth in their stool. In cases where they don’t swallow them, the teeth fall out while chewing food or playing with their toys. The phenomenon is brought about by the fact that their adult teeth push the baby teeth out from underneath.
Puppies lose their teeth in a natural process called teething. In this article, I’ll provide all the information you need to understand the process and the French Bulldog teething phases, when to expect it, and how to deal with it.
When Do French Bulldogs Get Their Puppy Teeth?
French bulldog puppies start growing their puppy/milk/baby teeth when they’re between two and three weeks old. The growth of these teeth follows a defined order whereby incisors grow first, and then canines develop. Premolars grow last when the puppies are about 6 weeks old. Puppies don’t have baby molars since these are adult teeth, which grow as the dog ages a little bit more. Every tooth has a set function.
- Incisors are located at the front. Frenchies use them for scraping and grooming.
- Canines are pointy. The dog uses them to lock objects. You should note that you can only start giving your Frenchie solid food once its canine teeth have grown. But it’s still advisable to wait until after 8 weeks.
- Premolars are flat. The dog uses them to crush food.
By the time your puppy is around 8 weeks old, it’ll have all 28 puppy teeth. At this point, the teeth will have achieved their maximum sizes and stopped growing. Because the teeth are fully developed, this is the best age to take a puppy home, especially as a new Frenchie owner, because they’re no longer in the natural weaning stage.
It would be best if you didn’t take a puppy home before it attains the age of 8 weeks. It’s irresponsible of you. Before this age, the puppy isn’t comfortable on its own, away from its mother. It learns and engages in many activities that promote growth while with its mother—as such, taking them home before they are 8 weeks old is doing them a lot of harm.
Then comes the teething phase that starts when a Frenchie is about 12 weeks old.
At what age do French Bulldogs lose their teeth?
Frenchies lose their baby teeth around 3 months old (12 weeks). The teeth will start falling off when your Frenchie is chewing on toys or even eating food. In some cases, the dog swallows the teeth. But I reiterate that it won’t get harmed when it consumes the teeth. They’ll remain undigested and will be passed off as part of the stool.
How long does French Bulldogs’ the teething process last?
Teething lasts anywhere between 20 and 24 weeks. As such, by the time your puppy is about 8 months old, it’ll have lost all its baby teeth and grew a full set of 42 adult teeth, which include incisors, canines, premolars, and molars. In very rare cases, some puppies finish teething at 4 months.
After teething, your adult Frenchie will have the following teeth structure:
- 22 teeth on its lower jaw
- 20 teeth on its upper jaw
Teething takes longer than the milk teeth growing phase because molars take longer to push through. Also, the puppy’s jaw and skull are still growing and reach the size that can accommodate all the teeth later on. However, its head doesn’t attain its full size until after about 12 months. So, the culmination of the teething phase isn’t indicative of full maturity.
Is it painful for French Bulldogs when they loose their teeth?
Teething is painful; it is an uncomfortable process for your dog. It, therefore, causes some distinct behaviors or effects that constitute the signs that your Frenchie is teething.
French Bulldog Teething Signs
You can find small teeth on the floor, in toys, or the stool. Losing these teeth makes way for the growth of adult teeth.
Once the puppy teeth have fallen off, you’ll notice that your Frenchie has red or sore gums that are somewhat swollen. This is because the adult teeth are pushing through the gums. The inflamed area indicates where the new teeth will grow.
Your Frenchie will start chewing anything and everything in an attempt to relieve the pain it’s experiencing. It’s not uncommon for the puppies to even bite your arm or leg. It’s, therefore, necessary to train your puppy to have a soft mouth, at this stage. I’ll give pointers on what you should do, later on in this article.
Failure to train them makes them think that biting everything is okay, and once they are grown and have all the 42 teeth, their bites will be stronger and cause injuries. They could even destroy your expensive furniture. It’ll also be harder to train them later.
Teething doesn’t lead to a lot of bleeding. As such, don’t be alarmed if you hate the sight of blood. Nonetheless, you’re likely to see tiny blood spots on the toys or furniture your Frenchie was chewing. You can also find them on their beds. The spots shouldn’t be an issue. They simply mean that your dog has lost one or several milk teeth.
Drooling in large amounts:
Drooling for teething puppies is a natural reaction to the growth of the adult teeth. It’s often messy and nasty, but you shouldn’t be too concerned about this, especially if your dog hasn’t attained the age of 8 months. You should only be worried if it continues drooling after 8 months since it’s indicative of underlying health issues. It’s advisable to take them to the vet at this stage.
Droopy or floppy ears
Frenchies have floppy ears at two stages: at birth and when they’re teething. In between birth and the onset of teething, their ears are firmly up and wide open. As such, the sight of floppy ears may worry you. Relax, though. It’s normal.
Calcium or lack thereof causes of the droopy ears. When teething, your Frenchie requires calcium to develop new, strong adult teeth. In this regard, calcium that would ordinarily be used in the puppy’s ears to make the cartilage stronger and firmer is directed elsewhere. However, once the teething phase ends, the ears will return to their regular standing and firm position, as before.
Reduced attention spans
The fact that teething is uncomfortable makes the puppies lose their attention pretty fast. They’re often distracted at this stage. As an owner, you should give your Frenchie plenty of attention, play with it, soothe it, and bond with it. By observing your concern, your puppy will understand that it isn’t going through this painful and uncomfortable phase alone.
Crooked or misaligned teeth
In certain instances, some puppy teeth are stubborn and don’t fall out easily. This is usually the case when there is a misalignment between the baby and adult tooth, and the latter, therefore, cannot push the former out. As a result, the adult tooth grows next to the puppy tooth. An abscess develops, and if this happens, do visit a vet.
- Mild Fever
- Eating slowly
- Hesitating to eat
- Whining and being overly irritable
How to Help your Teething Frenchie
I have pointed out the need for training your Frenchie to have a soft mouth. I reiterate that teething is characterized by excessive chewing. Therefore, I advise that you should store valuables, e.g., your leather belts, bras, shoes, and even the remote out of your puppy’s reach. Otherwise, they’re likely to be destroyed.
Chewing and Mouthing
Chewing in puppies occurs naturally since it’s how they learn about their surroundings. They use their mouth to touch things in a process called mouthing. As such, during teething and the accompanying discomfort, mouthing is accompanied by chewing.
Soft mouth training or bite inhibition
Once you store your valuables safely, and your puppy can’t reach them, it’ll turn to you and your furniture. Training it to have a soft mouth, therefore, applies when they’re biting your arm or foot. It entails expressing displeasure or pain through exclamations such as ‘Ouch!’ every time your puppy bites you. You should also exclaim loudly. This way, your puppy learns that what it’s doing is wrong. It also teaches it to moderate its bite strength. Immediately after this, you should give it a toy to play with. This demonstrates what it should bite.
But don’t be complacent since it’ll still return to bite you after some time. Thus, keep doing this repeatedly since dog training takes a while. This training process will teach it what it should or shouldn’t bite. It’ll grow up having this clear distinction in mind, and, as the owner, you won’t experience biting problems or destructive behavior when it reaches adulthood. You should start bite inhibition training before your Frenchie is 16.5 weeks old.
Soft mouth training and using toys go hand in hand. Besides helping them understand what they should bite or chew, the toys help the French bulldogs lose teeth more easily. The toys you give your dog should be tough and rugged since this type won’t be destroyed by the sharp milk teeth. Soft and fluffy toys don’t work.
The best toy for this is the Kong toy, available on Amazon. It’s made using the toughest natural rubber and can be used for many play activities, e.g., chewing, chasing, and fetching.
How to stop a French Bulldog from chewing during the teething phase
You’ve observed your puppy’s chewing, a sign that it’s going through teething. But this chewing is excessive and threatens to destroy your furniture and those valuables that your puppy can reach. So, you’re probably wondering how to strike a balance, knowing that chewing is important, that’ll ensure that your puppy’s chewing isn’t on the extreme, destructive end.
Well, you can’t stop the chewing completely. It comes naturally to them. What you can do is train them on what to chew and what they shouldn’t. This entails distracting them so that their focus is always on their toys and not on any other item. You can accomplish this by implementing the following:
- Wood really entices a teething puppy. As such, cover exposed wood on furniture or ensure that you choose furniture that isn’t made from wood. You could buy leather sofas or microfiber seats. These measures puppy-proof your home.
- Give your puppy any item that you wouldn’t mind getting destroyed, say, an old belt, shoe, or slipper. This will ensure that your dog is always distracted and won’t divert its attention to your valuable belongings.
- Buy your French bulldog more toys. This will give it options, thus keeping it distracted, always.
- Offer them ice cubes or frozen vegetables and fruits, e.g., apples, peaches, and peas. Cold items help the puppies relieve the pain they’re experiencing. Additionally, the fruits, in particular, have nutritional benefits.
- Does your puppy lounge too much in the house? Do you facilitate excessive relaxation because you think that, by virtue of the fact that your Frenchie is small, it doesn’t require a lot of exercise? Well, this could be the reason it targets your valuables. Therefore, exercise the puppy regularly. Taking your French bulldog for walks or making it chase balls around your yard more often guarantees that it’ll use the energy it would have channeled into chewing.
- Keep your puppy engaged and entertained. Puppies chew when they’re bored. As such, by keeping yours entertained throughout, you’ll keep it occupied, and it won’t automatically target your valuables. Again, by engaging your puppy all through, you’ll also be bonding and giving it the attention it needs during the teething phase. Killing two birds with one stone, really. However, refrain from playing tug of war with your Frenchie since it goes against soft mouth training by encouraging it to use excessive biting force.
- Refrain from giving your puppy objects that have the potential of choking it. A puppy could swallow a tiny rag or small pieces of cloth, e.g., undies and socks that could subsequently block its windpipe.
Tips for great French Bulldog dental health and care
Dental hygiene and care for your Frenchie are very essential, mainly after it has finished teething. Failure to observe dental care results in the development of tartar and plaque, which ultimately leads to periodontal disease. Tartar or calculus results from the accumulation of bacteria and food along the gums. It leads to the formation of plaque. Periodontal disease is an inflammation of the gum, which causes weak teeth.
You can take care of your Frenchie’s teeth by adding dental water to its water bottle (it’s odorless and tasteless so your dog won’t detect it). Alternatively, you can buy them toys made of rubber since the material gently cleans their teeth. Refrain from using human toothpaste on your Frenchie because fluoride is poisonous to dogs.
Now that you know what to expect, take care of your French bulldog during teething. Don’t be alarmed by its behavior during this time. Everything it does is quite normal. And once this teething phase is over, practice dental hygiene as well. I wish you all the best as you help your Frenchie through its teething phase.