Bite evaluation involves the study of an animal’s occlusion or how the teeth erupt and their position to each other when the jaws are closed. This can be developmentally altered or be predetermined genetically. In the case of teeth that have developed into improper occlusion from adult teeth malerupting, the underlying cause might be jaw trauma that affects the position of the young tooth bud. This subsequently erupts into an inappropriate position or becomes embedded and not visible due to the axis of eruption being disturbed. In addition to trauma, retention of baby teeth can cause adult teeth to erupt into an abnormal position due to the deciduous tooth’s root guiding the adult in it’s emergence into the wrong position
Unlike developmental problems causing individual teeth to be misaligned causing faulty occlusions, genetic causes for tooth positioning involve the jaw growth which dictate the position of the teeth. Like hip dysplasia, which has many genes (polygenic) coding for bone development, the jaw growth is often controlled by genetic forces. These genetic controls are inherited and often passed from one generation to another. For breeding animals in which good-to-perfect bites are important aesthetically and in the show ring, malpositioned teeth, due to genetics, can impact both the health of teeth and the soft tissue around them.