Have you ever wondered why puppies are always nippy? It’s primarily due to the teething phase. Your little Golden Retriever’s gums are sore, and the only way to ease it is to chew anything that comes its way. But the question is this: when do Golden Retrievers stop teething? The good news is that you only have to deal with the bitey attitude for around 4 to 6 months.
Remember that teething is a normal phase that every pup will go through. You just have to survive the first few months of your dog’s life. To help you, I outlined the teething timeline of Golden Retrievers and what you can do to help your pet.
When Do Golden Retrievers Stop Teething? Here’s The Timeline
If you brought home a young puppy, the very first challenge you’re going to face is teething. This period will occur twice in your young pet’s life: first, when the milk teeth grow, and the last would be for the permanent teeth.
If you’re at a loss on navigating this phase, this timeline should help you plan things out:
🐾Week 2 to Week 4
On the first four weeks of your Golden Retriever’s life, it would still be in the care of the breeder. This is also the time when the milk teeth will start coming out. It coincides with the Golden puppy opening its eyes and moving more.
🐾Week 5 to 6
As your Golden Retriever puppy enters its second month of life, all of its 28 milk teeth would have sprouted. This is also the same time when breeders will hand the puppies to buyers. However, some will put it on hold until the milk teeth have fallen off.
This is also the point when the puppy would be weaned off its mother dog. The breeder will introduce soft food to prepare the Goldie for its life as an adult doggo.
🐾Week 8 to Week 12
By this time, the Golden Retriever is already in the care of its new owner. You may notice the pup being playful and nippy, but not as worse as when the teeth are sprouting. Overall, this is a lull before the teeth fall, and the manic biting resumes.
🐾Week 13 to Week 16
In the third month of your dog’s life, its little puppy teeth will start to fall off. It will appear as tiny white crumbs on the floor that can be mixed with a small amount of blood and drool.
By this time, the adult set of teeth will start to grow. Expect your Golden Retriever puppy to chew and bite just about anything. This is normal and triggered by the discomfort on the gums. Take note that the gum pain can be unbearable for puppies, so you should be patient and don’t punish your dog for it.
Instead, this is the best time to introduce soft chew toys like plushies, KONG toys, and soft bones. This will teach your pup that there’s a right object to chew instead of targeting your ankles or your precious shoes. Be careful because puppy teeth are razor-sharp, and they can draw blood if your dog bites you hard.
Aside from appeasing your Golden Retriever’s teething, this period is also a great time to socialize your pooch.
🐾Week 17 to 6 months
By this time, your Golden Retriever will have its full set of adult teeth in place. It’s critical to visit the vet during this time to check if all the puppy teeth have fallen off. If not, the veterinarian will have to manually remove the milk teeth to prevent them from blocking the adult biters’ growth.
Take note that most Golden Retrievers will have 42 adult teeth, which is 10 more than what humans have. Always check your dog’s mouth and see if there’s an unusual growth that you need to raise to the veterinarian.
How to help a teething Golden Retriever
Teething is hard for both the dog and the owner. To help your Golden puppy get through the process much easier, here are some of the things you can do:
🐕Provide puppy chew toys
Chew toys play a big role in easing a teething puppy’s suffering. These toys are made soft, so it’s safe for your canine’s tiny mouth. You can also train your dog not to bite on other items than the toy itself. In the long run, these toys will also help you perform bite inhibition training.
Just remember that not all chew toys are suitable for puppies. Make sure that you get one suitable for your Golden Retriever’s size and age. Avoid very stiff chew toys as this can chip the pup’s teeth and hurt the gums even more.
Aside from that, you should always supervise your Goldie whenever it’s chewing the toy. Every toy can be a choking hazard, especially if the pup managed to rip tiny pieces apart. Also, you should throw away a chew toy once it’s starting to shred.
Remember that it’s normal to see traces of blood on the chew toy if your pup’s milk teeth are still falling off. However, if the blood is more than just a smear, it’s best to consult the veterinarian to see if there’s something wrong with your pet’s mouth.
🐕Give frozen carrots or banana slices
Aside from chew toys, you can also give homemade treats to your pup. Frozen carrot and banana slices are excellent choices for Golden Retriever pups. The cold temperature helps numb the discomfort on the dog’s gums, which will alleviate your pet’s suffering.
Also, these treats are chewy and nutritious at the same time. Just avoid over-indulging your pup since Golden Retrievers are prone to obesity.
Other pet owners give ice cubes, but I don’t always recommend this option. The ice cube might chip off your pup’s teeth and even become a choking hazard if it’s bigger than usual.
🐕Offer frozen towels
If your Golden Retriever pup already had too many frozen treats, you can improvise by freezing a towel on the fridge. After that, you can give it to your dog to chew. This helps a lot in alleviating sore gums, but make sure that the towel isn’t easy to shred. Also, wash the towel before freezing and giving it to your pup as a chew toy. And as with other toys, always be present to supervise your pet.
🐕Ask the vet for pain medications
If your Goldie pup is crying and refusing to eat due to the discomfort of teething, you can consult with the vet for potential pain medication. Never self-administer pain medications to your dog, as it can do more harm than help.
The safest option for most pups is a teething gel, which helps reduce swelling and redness of the gums. This will soothe your puppy, but only temporarily.
Overall, most Golden Retrievers can go through teething without the need for serious medication. Sedatives can help, but always seek the go-signal of the vet first.
🐕Beware of malocclusion
One of the most common problems among teething puppies is malocclusion. This is the misalignment of the teeth, especially if some of the puppy teeth didn’t fall off properly. It will block the growth of the adult teeth, which can lead to a problematic bite, tooth infection, and a slew of dental problems.
Malocclusion can be Class I, II, III, or IV. The following are the differences:
- Class I. This is also called individual rotated teeth, where the dog’s jaw has a normal length and shape. It just happened that the teeth erupted in the wrong position.
- Class II. Class II malocclusion is also called mandibular distocclusion. When this happens, the Goldie’s mandible will become shorter as a cause of a genetic disorder.
- Class III. Class III or mandibular mesiocclusion affects the upper jaw, making it shorter. This is normal for some breeds like Bulldogs, but not for Golden Retrievers.
- Class IV. This is a wry bite characterized by the left to right asymmetry of the dog’s jaws. This can leave the Golden Retriever with an open bite. It’s highly problematic and can be challenging to fix. Make sure that your pup won’t suffer from jaw trauma growing up to reduce the likelihood of Class IV malocclusion.
What to avoid when your Golden Retriever is teething
Teething is a challenging phase, especially if you’re a first-time Golden Retriever owner. Still, you should avoid these common mistakes:
- Punishing the puppy. Your puppy is already in great distress, so punishing and shouting at him for biting will not help. It will just make your dog more anxious, not to mention that behavioral problems will occur. That’s not a good start for both of you. With that, always extend your patience and remember that this phase will end soon.
- Not brushing the puppy’s teeth. Like human teeth, it’s important to keep the healthy dental hygiene of your dog. Daily brushing isn’t really required, but advisable if you have the time. Weekly brushing or using a water additive will help a lot to prevent the formation of plaque on your dog’s new set of biters.
- Not visiting the vet. You need to take your Golden Retriever to the vet’s clinic at least once during the teething phase. This is so the vet can check if the teeth are growing properly or if any puppy teeth need to be removed manually.
- Not protecting your furniture. When you have a teething Golden Retriever puppy, you need to secure your valuables. Lock up your expensive shoes, spray bitter apple on the feet of furniture, and never leave your clothes lying around. This will save you from the frustration of finding out that your pup chewed all of it.
- Reinforcing the biting behavior. Sometimes, we inadvertently reinforce a pup’s biting behavior by our reaction to it. Instead of pulling your arm or feet away when the pup bites, stay still and make a loud yelping sound. This will send a message to your pup that the bite is hurtful and not a positive interaction. In comparison, pulling away will just push your pup to bite more by instinct.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How long does the chewing stage last in a Golden Retriever puppy?
A: There’s no specific timeline as to when a Goldie will stop biting or nipping. Some Golden Retrievers can keep on being nippy after reaching adult age. The key here is bite inhibition training as early as possible to wean your dog off its biting habits.
Q: What are the symptoms of a puppy teething?
A: Puppy teething is characterized by intense chewing, swelling of the gums, falling teeth, and mild bleeding on the gum line. You’d also notice your puppy drooling and whining while eating. Some dogs will also put anything on their mouths to ease the discomfort.
Q: Is teething painful for puppies?
A: Teething isn’t intensively painful, but it will be uncomfortable for puppies. There can be mild pain as the milk teeth fall off, but not too strong that your dog can no longer chew or eat. If that happens, you should bring your Goldie to the vet’s clinic for proper examination.
Q: Do puppies get sick when teething?
A: Teething will cause slight sickness to puppies. Some will have a poor appetite, while others will experience upset stomachs. Most of these problems will clear up on their own and shouldn’t become life-threatening. But if the adverse conditions don’t subside, it’s best to bring your dog to the veterinarian.
Q: Do puppies get bad breath when teething?
A: Many puppies tend to develop bad breath during the teething period. This is due to the accumulation of bad bacteria on the lining of the gums. However, this is just short-lived and must go away after brushing. If it persists, you should get your dog examined at the vet’s clinic.
When do Golden Retrievers stop teething? I know you’re tired of all the ankle bites and shredded belongings, but this won’t take long. Your pup will soon finish teething once it reaches six months old. After that, you should focus on training to curb the biting and chewing habits.