Puppies are initially born without teeth. They do not receive their first (puppy) teeth until they reach between six and eight weeks of age. They grow a total of 28 teeth, which are known as baby teeth or deciduous teeth. The first teeth that fall out are the incisor teeth, followed by the premolars and the canines. Puppies do not have molar teeth, only premolars. Their upper and lower canine teeth are at the back of their mouths and are larger. Their upper and lower incisor teeth are located in the middle.
For puppies, the teething process continues for several months, off and on. For a puppy, this can be an uncomfortable and painful period. When puppies are teething, they increase their biting and chewing and test out different objects and textures to relieve their discomfort.
Between the ages of three months and seven months, a puppy begins to lose its deciduous teeth. Each deciduous tooth root will generally be absorbed by the adult tooth, though there are instances where this does not properly occur. At three months, the incisors begin to fall out to make room for the new adult teeth. At four months, the adult molars and adult canines are beginning to come in. Between the ages of six and seven months, the adult molars will come in. Finally, by seven to eight months, the full set of adult teeth should have come in.
By the time a puppy is eight months old, it should have a full set of 42 teeth, but some breeds vary from that number and have more or less. Generally speaking, the larger the dog, the faster the teeth will appear. Doberman Pinschers are an example of dogs with fewer than 42 teeth; Spaniels and Italian Greyhounds tend to have more teeth. Between three months and four months of age, a puppy should be examined by a veterinarian to make sure there are no bite problems. If a bad bite is occurring as a result of puppy teeth, pulling the baby teeth prematurely may be necessary.
A Dog's Teeth by Kelley Roper, Love To Know
Canine Teeth: My, What Big Teeth You Have by Norma Bennett Woolf, Dog Owners' Guide
Oral and Dental Anatomy of Dogs, Cats, and Ferrets by The Veterinary & Aquatic Services Department, Drs. Foster & Smith
Dental Anatomy of Dogs by Melissa Rouge, Colorado State University