by Dr. Ku
Sipping coffee and reading the morning news online, Henry's face caught Robin's eye. She has always had a soft spot for Dachshunds. Getting ready for the day, she grabbed her bag and thought she might have time to go by the County shelter (where Henry's photo was being publicized) and just take a peek. Just a peek. Within less than an hour, Henry was in Robin's car heading toward home. Never mind that he is probably already 8 years old, has terrible breath, and red swollen ears. He needs help!
Turns out poor Henry had a terrible infection in both ears, severe dental tartar, and gum recession causing significant periodontal infection as well. After a week on antibiotics, the smell was finally more tolerable to the rest of the dogs in the house and soon Henry was sleeping with the others (and Robin). But things were not to be so simple. He was scheduled for some dental work to clear up the infection and remove any loose teeth that were not salvageable. Most likely our little friend's ear infections were also related to the dental problems.
After two weeks on antibiotics, Henry arrived for his dental work. His infection was better controlled; however, over the years, the hair and debris up around the receding gums and exposed tooth roots had caused most of the teeth to separate from the periodontal bone. Cleaning alone was no longer enough to keep the infection from recurring. Some of the longer rooted canine teeth sockets actually connected directly to the nasal sinuses, and Henry ended up losing all of his top teeth and needed extensive oral surgery to prevent the infection from spreading further into his nasal passages. In fact, Henry had 27 teeth removed and 11 teeth remaining after his procedure. With a full set of 42 teeth to begin with, he must have already lost 4 on his own before he found Robin.
Luckily for Henry, Robin was able to help him with his dental problems. His ear infection is now nearly resolved and his gums are on the mend.