March 2008
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Butch – The Toothless Hockey Goalie

Butch and I made our semiannual trip to the vet yesterday. Butch always knows exactly where we are going well into the trip. He seems to know just where we are and starts to quake knowing that we are headed to the vet which usually means some type of uncomfortable anal probing for him. Being that he is all up to date on his shots and has been healthy as a horse over this unpredictable winter I thought I would take him in a month early because I noticed that he was missing a tooth right in the middle of his front lower row. I couldn’t get a good look at them so I thought I would have Dave (our vet) take a look to make sure it wasn’t broken off at the root and cause an abscess. About a month ago, Butch was just laying in his normal spot between me and the TV, chewing on a raw hide, and all of a sudden he yalped and started walking around the chair with his head down. I immediately sprang out of the chair and grabbed him to see what was wrong. I checked him from head to toe. He wasn’t limping. I rubbed him briskly from his head all the way down his legs and even checked between his toes for blood or anything. I found nothing wrong with him. We returned to our respective places and Butch went on chewing and I watching TV. Last week when over at Dad’s he was giving treats to the dogs and I noticed a black spot on Butch’s front lower teeth. A closer look revealed the vacant spot where a tooth used to be. Naturally, being the paranoid New Dog Dad, I thought Oh No! His teeth are rotting and falling out! During the vet visit Dave checked them and said “His teeth are just fine and very healthy and clean. Sometimes they just lose them and we really don’t do anything about it. It’s the side teeth that we worry about the most, molars and such but they are fine. Has Butch been playing any Hocky or Rugby lately?” I had to think that he was with Bosco over at Dad’s. Those two are always rough housing. So my advice to myself and anyone reading is that if your dog yalps or whimpers for some seemingly unknown reason, and you can’t find anything outwardly wrong with him or her,  don’t forget to check the teeth along with everything else!

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