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How many teeth do dogs have?

The number of teeth in dogs changes as they grow from puppies to adults.

Puppies have 28 baby teeth, also called milk teeth, which start to appear about two weeks after birth and are usually all grown in by eight to 10 weeks old.

As your puppy gets older, these milk teeth fall out to make way for permanent adult teeth. Adult dogs usually have 42 permanent teeth — 20 in the upper jaw and 22 in the lower jaw.

This is more than the 32 teeth that humans have.

Dog dental chart

Our dog dental chart infographic shows the dental anatomy of adult dogs. It details the four types of teeth and how each serves a specific purpose. Knowing about these teeth and what they’re for is important for keeping your dog's mouth healthy.

infographic of dogs mouth for article on how many teeth does a dog have

Read more: More resources to help you keep your dog's teeth healthy

Types of dog teeth

Dogs have four different types of teeth, each with its own job:

Incisors are the small teeth at the front of the mouth. There are 12 incisors in total, six on top and six on bottom. Dogs use incisors to tear meat from bones and to groom themselves.

Canines, which are sometimes called fangs, are the long, pointy teeth on the top and bottom at each side of the mouth. There are four canines. Dogs use these teeth to puncture and hold onto things, like when playing tug-of-war.

Premolars sit behind the canines, and dogs use them for shearing. Adult dogs have 16 premolars, eight on top and eight on bottom. Dogs often chew with these teeth on the side of their mouth.

Molars are at the back of the mouth and are used for grinding and chewing food. There are 10 molars, four on top and six on bottom.

When do puppies lose their teeth?

Puppies begin growing baby teeth at three to four weeks old and typically have all 28 milk teeth by three to five months old. Milk teeth start falling out around three to four months, starting with the incisors, followed by the canine teeth at five to six months. The premolars and molars come in between five and eight months, completing the set of 42 adult teeth.

Sometimes, puppy teeth don’t fall out on their own. These retained teeth can lead to overcrowding and cause adult teeth to grow in the wrong position. Keep an eye on your puppy's teeth to ensure all their baby teeth fall out and the adult teeth grow in correctly.

If any of the baby teeth don't fall out, your vet might need to remove them to prevent dental problems in the future.

Read more: Read our handy tips on visiting the vet

Need more advice on your dog’s teeth?

For expert advice, use our find a vet page to find your nearest vet, or speak to a vet online using our video vet service.

Remember, prevention is always better than cure, so start taking steps today to protect your pet’s teeth. Members of Pet Health Club get six-monthly dental check-ups and 10% off dental procedures as part of their benefits.