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Keeping Your Hamster’s Teeth Healthy

A hamster’s teeth are a vital part of its body. Large incisor teeth grow on the upper and lower jaw that develop continuously throughout the animal’s life. These incisors allow hamsters to crack open nuts and seeds, two staples of their diet. They are also useful for constructing burrows and hideouts. These teeth must grow straight and simultaneously be consistently filed down so they don’t grow too long. Below, a Farmington veterinarian answers questions on how to maintain your hamster’s tooth health.

How Often Should I Check My Hamster’s Teeth?

You should check your hamster’s teeth on a regular basis—this may mean once a day, three or four times a week, or at the very least once a week. If a hamster’s incisor is broken or misaligned, it could prevent the animal’s ability to eat properly. All too quickly, your pet could become malnutrition and starved. Ask your Farmington vet if the intervals you’re using are sufficient.

How Do You Check Hamster’s Teeth?

While your hamster may not love dental-checking time at first, if you do it enough and remain gentle, he should get used to it. Hold your pet gently with one hand, then use the other to pull back the skin around the neck. Your hamster should then expose his teeth, allowing you a look. Check for any misaligned teeth or teeth that seem to be butting against each other harshly.

Remember that a hamster’s teeth are naturally yellow or brown colored—it doesn’t mean your pet has a lot of plaque build-up. Your Farmington veterinarian can tell you more about a hamster’s natural teeth color and alignment.

What Should I Do If Something’s Not Right?

The best thing to do if you see a potential problem with your pet’s teeth is call your Farmington veterinarian and set up an appointment. Your veterinary professional will examine your pet’s teeth and determine how to treat any issues. A tooth-trimming procedure might fix the problem—this is relatively quick and doesn’t harm your hamster in the least.

How Can I Prevent Teeth Issues?

Two things will promote healthy wear-and-tear on your hamster’s teeth: the proper diet and gnawing toys. Hamster food that is available commercially and in pet stores will provide your animal with the right nutrients. In addition, good chew toys are a necessity. Hardwoods are often recommended, and commercially available toys can be good options as well. Your Farmington vet can make recommendations on diet and toys for your pet.

With regular check-ups, the right diet and toys, and quick veterinary action in the event of a problem, your hamster should have strong, healthy teeth well-suited for all of his chewing and burrowing needs!

 

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