Exclusively Setters

Home for Irish Setter Lovers Around the World

This is an overgrowth of gum tissue, making the canines and premolars seem to become smaller due to them becoming covered by the ginigva... Our 8 year old Bramble has been diagnosed with this and although the growth is not considered to be malignant, the vet suggests the mass should be removed surgically. There are deep pockets where food and bacteria find a wonderful place to ferment...
Has anyone experience of this affliction and surgical treatment?

Views: 26

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Yes I have Susan, I have had this on three of my bitches. According to the vet, this is common for Irish Setters. All three dogs have been well over 10 years of age so (although the vet wanted to) I never did anything about it. But in my case there was no discussion about pockets, just about growth of the gums. This of course does not mean there were no pockets...just that I was never told there were.

These three bitches all became old, 13, 14 and 15 years of age and would chew bones and eat normal food right to the bitter end.
Neither did it seem to affect them other that the teeth looked shorter.

And once dogs are getting to be 11 or 12, I am certainly not too happy about any operation. 8 year old on the other hand is a differant matter, according to my vet it was a simple operation.
yes Susan,my first Irish back in the 80's had this condition developing when he was about 9 I think. We had some of the bits of gums surgically removed especially around the top canines and it did not regrow and his breath was much fresher afterwards. I don't know why he should have developed this as he was given big marrow bones regularly and also I tried to clean his teeth regularly.He went on to live a normal life and died of kidney failure at 13 years and 8 months.
Thanks Ursula and Catherine!
According to my vet there is a breed disposition in Boxers, so possibly there is one in Irish also...
I won't be having anything done to Bramble until after my expected litter has been and gone and will then have to make a decision. I am pleased that you both confirm this is unlikely to be malignant.

It seems vets don't own Setters? Or are just none on this list???
Just caught up with this one. One of mine had this, Flynn and had the overgrowth of gum cut back three times. because of the pockets which trapped bacteria and food, it made his breath smell, which was fresh again after the op. He had to have the op as the overgrowth of gum made it very difficult for him to chew his food. It grew so quickly that his back teeth were completely covered each time. As soon as the excess gum had been removed, he was right as rian once more, fresh breath and able to eat normally. He lived to be 14. He is the only Irish I've had in 29 years that has had this. My very experienced vet told me that she had never seen this in Irish before, but had seen it a lot in Boxers. In people it can be caused by certain medications.
Best wishes,
Many thanks for your input Michelle - I see you've been delving in the archives...;-))

Just a quick update on Bramble (9 yrs), the one affected by this condition: a year has gone by and I have not had her operated on and she has not had any problems due to the condition (so far). Maybe it is not as severe as in your Flynn as her teeth are not covered. I'm keeping an eye on her...
Yes, this is the first time since I joined that I've actually had the time to delve into the forum pages!
You are lucky. Flynn literally went from not having a problem at all to having a severe problem very quickly. This was not because I had not noticed it either as I clean my dog's teeth with dental tools every week. Even my vet was alarmed at how quickly the gum grew down over the teeth. I forgot to say that after the third operation to cut his gums back, he was prescribed a special toothpaste called CORDOSYL. I had to spread this onto the inflamed gums twice a day with my finger and massage it in. It had a cooling effect on the inflammation and so he felt less pain. I also had to be very careful to gently lift the overgrowth and clean underneath to make sure there were no trapped particles of food or hair. His gums continued to be a problem but to a much lesser degree, so he never needed to have his gums cut back and corterised again. All my boys have been very closely related since 1980 and he is the only one who has had this problem, so maybe it was due to some of the medication he had to take. He had Cardiomyopathy and also an irregular heartbeat. So he was taking heart medication and beta blockers. I suggest this, as I also have beta blockers and according to my dentist I have a very mild version of this problem, which she says is caused by my medication.
The teeth were certainly never covered on my bitches, neither do I recall them smelling so bad...well around the age of 12, they dont have the same sweet-smelling breath as puppies have.
But it was nothing noticable...perhaps I have lived with pugs for too long?
They smell at a distance!
And that even at a rather tender age and only weeks after having had their teeth done at the vets...it may be that I have built up a resistance to bad breath :-)
Hmm, not all puppies have sweet-smelling breath... not after eating cat poo anyway;-))
Some fortunate people (like my father) have no sense of smell - now is that a good or a bad thing when you live amongst dogs???
Your father would be perfect for a pug!
OK, I agree...cat-poo is not my favorite smell either...
My old Viktor have this too, and the vet told me not to operate because it usually grows back after a while. He don´t seem to be bothered about it and there is no pockets either. I have also heard that is quite common on our Irish Setters.
Again proof (as if that were needed!) of how good this site is. Thank you all for sharing your experienc! - I see Bramble is not the one-and-only case. It also shows that it is worth enquiring what others have done in similar situations before following the vet's advice of having Bramble's gum's cut back. I feel I can still get this done if any problems develop.
How true Susan,
The only reason Flynn had to have the operation was as I said above, because the problem was severe and causing him great problems. If his teeth had not been covered and he had been able to eat normally and not been in pain, I would not have put him through it, as it is not a nice op to have done. Afterwards they feel much the same as they would after a descaling session under anaesthetic, but as the gums have been cut back and then corterised, their mouth is sore for a few days and quite bloody as well. Obviously it depends on the severity of the problem whether or not you would opt to have this done. Unfortunately, for Flynn, his problem came back again just as badly, but a while afterwards, not straight away, which probably indicated that his medication had something to do with it. if he hadn't had the op at all he would have been much much worse. Having the op when needed allowed him to then go back to normal for quite a time. Unless the problem is caused by medication, causing it to re-appear later, then my understanding of this, is that when the problem is severe and the animal needs to have the operation, generally it sorts the problem out once and for all. It's worth keeping an eye on the gum growth to see how fast it is progressing as well. Also after the third tme of having the op, my vet discovered the CORSODYL toothpaste treatment, that I spoke about before. This not only soothed and cooled his gums, but also seemed to slow down the growth. He lived for quite a long time after the last op and his gums never got so bad that he needed to have the op again.




© 2024   Created by Gene.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service