Guinea pigs are interesting creatures with some pretty unique features, including their teeth. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at guinea pig teeth and what you need to know to keep them healthy. We will also discuss when and why you might need to see a vet about your guinea pig’s teeth. If you are a guinea pig owner, then you know that your furry friend’s teeth are constantly growing. Keeping teeth healthy and trim is critical. We will also cover common problems that can occur with guinea pig teeth and how to solve them. So, if you want to learn more about your guinea pig’s teeth, keep reading!
Guinea pigs have twenty teeth. These teeth continue to grow their entire life. This growth helps to keep their teeth sharp and ready for cutting through tough plant material. What should guinea pig teeth look like? Guinea pigs have three different types of teeth: incisors, premolars, and molars. The incisors are the narrow, sharp teeth at the front of the mouth, and they are used for grooming and nibbling on food. The premolars are located behind the incisors. They are narrower and sharper than the molars, and they are used for chewing and grinding the chewy foods that guinea pigs thrive on. The molars are located at the back of the mouth and they are heavy duty grinders that do most of the work when chewing food.
You can care for your pet’s teeth at home as long as things go well, though there are also occasions for a visit to the veterinarian. Just like humans, guinea pigs need to take care of their teeth to ensure good oral health. At home, you can help keep your guinea pig’s teeth healthy by offering hay and other fresh vegetables for them to gnaw on. This will help to wear down their teeth and prevent overgrowth.
Should they have their teeth trimmed? A professional can explain exactly how they should look:
“Incisors are very long, curved and of white color. The enamel is thicker on the rostral aspect and thinner on the lingual aspect which results in the chisel shape and continuous sharpening.”
With a proper diet and chewing options, guinea pig teeth should rarely need trimming. If you notice that your guinea pig’s teeth are starting to grow too long or have become damaged, you can take them to a vet for a professional trimming.
Then, How to keep your guinea pig’s teeth short? A guinea pigs teeth get worn down by chewing on something. There are a few different things you can give your piggy to keep their teeth health, hay is the absolute most significant. This constant eating of hay is great for wearing down their teeth. Orchard hay or timothy hay are very helpful for their teeth!
We highly recommend our Orchard hay and Timothy Hay! The state of the art filtration system removes and prevents dust, making the hay even tastier. The result is fresher, higher quality hay for guinea pigs, and they love it and eat it a lot!
A guinea pigs chew natural wood to help keep their teeth in shape too. Our GuineaDad Queens Castles are made with the lightest hardwoods and make sure their teeth don't overgrow. That's why we recommend The Queen's Castle to be strong and safe to chew on!
If guinea pigs do not have their teeth taken care of properly, they can develop several dental problems. If the growth is not kept in check, it can start to interfere with their ability to eat. In severe cases, overgrown teeth can even lead to mouth injuries. Additionally, guinea pigs’ teeth can become stained and dirty.
Finally, if guinea pigs’ teeth are not taken care of properly, they may start to develop infections. These can be painful and may require veterinary treatment. In short, it’s important to take good care of your guinea pig’s teeth to avoid these problems.
Impact of Care Choices
When considering how to care for guinea pig teeth, let’s take an even closer look at diet as this is elemental. We should know what to feed and what not to feed. While hay is the best bulk food for guinea pigs, there are some vegetables and fruits that can also be included in their diet. (Here are some herbal supplement that you can include in your guinea pig’s diet!)
However, there are also some foods that should be avoided, as they can damage guinea pig teeth. For example, nuts and seeds that are very hard can cause cracks or breaks in teeth. In addition, sugary foods can lead to tooth decay.
To find out more about what kinds of veggies are good for guinea pigs' diets, check out our blog about What Vegetables can Guinea Pigs Eat? Veggies Good for Guinea Pigs' Diet !
A great study was done to determine the impact of diet on guinea pig teeth.
“Dental diseases are among the most important reasons for presenting guinea pigs (Cavia porcellus) and other rodents to veterinary clinics… In this study, we tested the effect of four different pelleted diets of increasing abrasiveness [due to both internal (phytoliths) and external abrasives (sand)] or whole grass hay …“
Ultimately, the study found that diet abrasiveness has an effect, but that we must also be careful to feed a very balanced diet. Mineral imbalances are as likely to cause problems, possibly even more likely. In addition, some guinea pigs are born with hereditary malocclusion. (Malocclusion is a misaligned positioning of the teeth when the mouth is closed.). So we must pay attention to not just what we feed, but how balanced the diet is. If a guinea pig has genetic teeth issues, additional care is needed regardless of diet.
Brushing your guinea pig’s teeth may seem like a daunting task, but it is actually quite simple and only needs to be done once a week. A soft bristled brush that is specifically designed for small animals is ideal. You will also need to choose a toothpaste that is safe for guinea pigs. Next, gently insert the brush into your guinea pig’s mouth and use circular motions to scrub their teeth. After you have finished brushing, give your guinea pig plenty of fresh water to drink.
By following these simple tips, you can help ensure that your guinea pig has a long and healthy life. Remember to give your guinea pig lots of love, feed them a good diet, and take them to the vet for regular checkups. Pay special attention to the teeth of your guinea pig and make adjustments as needed. With just a little bit of effort on your part, you can keep your furry friend happy and healthy for years to come!
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