PURPOSE: The objective of this study was to compare and evaluate the inflammatory responses of three widely used suture materials in the keratinized gingiva and buccal mucosa of beagle dogs. METHODS: Silk, polyglycolic acid, and nylon sutures were placed within the mandibular keratinized gingiva and maxillary buccal mucosa of four male beagle dogs. Biopsies were taken 3, 7, and 14 days after suturing. Specimens were prepared with hematoxylin-eosin stain for evaluation under a light microscope. RESULTS: The suture materials placed in the oral mucosa elicited more inflammatory reactions than did those placed in the keratinized gingiva. The multifilament suture materials caused more inflammatory tissue reactions than did the monofilament suture materials in the oral mucosa. CONCLUSIONS: If oral hygiene is well maintained and suture materials are placed in the keratinized gingiva, silk, nylon, and polyglycolic acid are considered to be proper suture materials for oral surgery. However, it is advisable to use monofilament suture materials if the suture site is within the oral mucosa.