Dentigerous Cysts

This is a 4 year old female spayed long haired chihuahua with a large purple lump located where the right mandibular canine should have been. At first presentation this looked like a mass on the jaw and that is what the owners thought. But after radiographing the jaw it was discovered that there was in fact an embedded canine that had never erupted properly. This dog also had a base narrow left mandibular canine tooth that was contacting the left maxillary third incisor. Treatment for this dog consisted of 1. Removing the embedded canine and the cyst that formed around it, 2. extracting the left maxillary third incisor to give room for the lower canine to occlude and 3. placing a composite extension on the left mandibular canine tooth so that it could tract properly outward instead of into the dog’s palate.

Base narrow canine teeth (linguoverted canine teeth) are a common malocclusion in dogs especially if they have persistent deciduous (baby) canine teeth. It is very important to treat these malocclusions as they sometimes lead to further damage to the palate and in some cases an oronasal fistula. Whenever there is a missing tooth, a radiograph should be taken to rule out the possibility of an impacted or embedded tooth. These often lead to a dentigerous cyst formation, which can be damaging to the surrounding bone as well as be painful for the pet.