Oral Damage from Dog’s Electric Burn

An adorable 18-month-old mix breed puppy who chewed on an electrical cord and the electric burn resulted in dead and infected teeth and damaged gingiva and bone. He had significant electrocution burns in his mouth due to the shock.  At the time, he needed to be treated at an emergency facility due to the fact that he developed pulmonary edema (which is a common complication of electrical accidents).

After recovering from the emergency, the owner thought that his baby was cured.  However, the gums in the area never healed correctly.  In a short time, he developed significant problems with the area and the gum started receding, the premolar became loose, and the breath started smelling.  He was then referred to Veterinary Dental Specialties and Oral Surgery.

He looked great on presentation, however when he was placed under general anesthesia, we noted that he had significant inflammation/scarring in the area as well as a mobile right maxillary third premolar (107).

Intraoral dental pictures of the maxillary right third and fourth premolars (107 and 108) revealing damaged gingiva, gum recession, and furcation exposure.

In addition, there was furcational exposure of the right mandibular fourth premolar (408).

Intraoral dental picture of the mandibular right P4 (408) revealing furcation exposure

Full mouth dental radiographs were exposed. This conformed the significant alveolar bone loss to 107 and 108 as well as the fact that fourth premolar had periapical rarefaction.

Intraoral dental radiographs of the maxillary right revealing significant alveolar bone loss (red line (white line shows normal height)). In addition, 107 has periapical rarefaction (blue arrows)

This indicated tooth death and infection.  The dental radiograph of the mandibular fourth premolar confirmed the furcation exposure.

Intraoral dental radiograph of the mandibular right fourth premolar (108) confirming the furcational involvement (red arrow)

The maxillary right third and fourth premolars (107, 108) were surgically extracted.  There was some necrotic bone in the area of 107

Intraoperative dental picture of the extraction sites of 17 and 108 showing inflamed bone.

The bone was debrided and the defect closed with absorbable suture. 408 was likewise extracted.

Post-operative intraoral picture showing good apposition of the wound margins.

The patient went on to have a full recovery and at 4 week recheck was normal. This case shows that emergency vets can have a significant influence on the final outcome of the patient’s condition.  In addition,

This subject (and many other emergency dental conditions) is covered in the text “Veterinary Dentistry Applications in Emergency Medicine and Care of Critical or Compromised patients”. Find Veterinary Dentistry Books.