We have had a series of pups brought into us where the owners have paid Full Price of what they thought was a healthy puppy, only to find out that the pup has a major life-impacting defect in the form of a misshapen jaw. In one instance, an elderly pensioner was charged $1500 by a pet shop; who summed up the major defect (in the first of the photos) as ‘may need a couple of teeth pulled later”!
The new owners were shocked to discover that there is no such a simple thing as ‘pulling” any tooth let alone the curved canine teeth in any pup or dog. The procedure needs a general anesthetic and in these deformed cases often many teeth, including both the baby and the adult teeth, have to be removed.
The condition left untreated will not kill the dog but will significantly impact the dog’s daily life ongoing. We know that due to the anatomy of a dog’s tooth that they experience much greater pain than humans, but still have to eat through that pain, otherwise the alternative is starving to death. That is why these deformed mouths in the 21st C are now treated early and aggressively to remove the teeth impaled into the gums on the other side and to free the locking of the canine teeth so that the lower jaw can grow forward. Mouth physio games and further adult dental work are now also advised..
In the situation of the older pup in the photo on the right above, the pet shop involved there reimbursed the purchase fee to the owner to offset some of the medical bills; in this way, the pup had a forever home and the owner, fully bonded with the dog, did not have to return their pet.
As there are No qualified Veterinary Specialists in the immediate Illawarra area for most aspects of small animal companion medicine-(having a “special interest” doesn’t make a vet a specialist and is actually illegal, misleading and fraudulent for any general practitioner to state/say), the dental work was done by a Specialist Vet Dentist in Sydney for less than cost. By reimbursing the client, that pet shop displayed that they had not intentionally sold a not-fit-for-purpose full- priced product to a client, thus protecting their pet shop’s good name.
The elderly owners of the other pup in the main & below photograph are currently in discussion with a different pet shop on the basis of purchasing a not fit for full -price sale pup at the full price. Hopefully, this issue will be resolved as promptly so the best care can be given to this pup asap.
Update 27th Sept 2017. The Petshop partially reimbursed the owners enough to fully cover the cost of the puppy surgery in Sydney which is a good result for all.