A five year old Malamute came to Animal Dental Care in Colorado for a slab fracture of her upper left carnassial (fourth pre-molar). The injury was most likely a result of chewing on something too hard and cracked a chunk off her tooth. As you can see, the fractured piece is still being held on by her gums. This type of pet tooth fracture is very painful and hard to see while the pet is awake, so the diagnosis required veterinary dental radiographs under anesthesia.
After discussing the diagnosis with the vet dentist, her owner elected to move forward with a root canal. so the tooth could be saved. The tooth was successfully treated with root canal therapy, however the pet continued to chew on things that were too hard for her teeth. Unfortunately the chewing resulted in the composite restoration, which protects the root canal surface, to break.
Upon noticing the damaged tooth, her owner brought her in again to have the tooth evaluated and repaired. Due to the irritation caused by the new fracture, her gums were inflamed and irritated requiring the gums to be cut back to properly repair the tooth. After the fracture site was repaired, the composite restoration was smoothed and re-sealed. Finally, in light of the dogs propensity for chewing, the doctor fitted the tooth for a stainless steel crown to minimize the risk of any further breakage.