Can I save my senior dog's remaining teeth?

Question: 

Last week we adopted a 10 year old Chihuahua mix. Two days ago he had 4 teeth extracted. Prior to that he had most others extracted. He has few teeth left. His lower canines are in place but are so big they stick up out of his mouth. He has severe periodontal disease with infection to the bone. He is taking Clindamycin. Is there anything we can do to help him retain the canines? We know he is an old dog, but we care about him having the best life he can.

Answer: 

How great that you adopted an older dog. It is not unusual for small breed dogs to have periodontal disease. The Clindamycin is a perfect choice for oral bacteria. In regards to helping retain his few remaining teeth, brushing, feeding a dry diet and providing dental chews can help. However, with the dry diet you need to be sure he is able to chew the food. You may want to water it down to make it softer without making it a mushy consistency. In the end, while it would be sad to lose his teeth, there are many toothless dogs that eat a soft diet and live a wonderful life. If you have further questions regarding dentistry, I would recommend consulting with a veterinary dentist.