Everyone likes to have a nice set of fangs and rabbits are no exception! So when Tipples the rabbit came to see us with a dribbling problem and overgrown front teeth we needed to sort this out pronto as this was likely to be causing her pain. With rabbit dental issues there is often a bigger problem occurring at the back of the mouth.
Because rabbits’ teeth are continually growing, they require plenty of hay and roughage to chew on throughout the day to keep their teeth at the correct length. If for any reason the teeth stop being worn down at the rate that they are growing the teeth will become longer and start to cause problems within the mouth.
Tipples needed to have an x-ray of the mouth and an assessment of the rear “cheek” teeth and front “incisors” under an anaesthetic. From this we were able to see that she had some sharp spurs on her cheek teeth that were causing pain and reducing the amount of chewing that she was doing therefore allowing all of her teeth to get too long. Tipples' teeth were gently ground down to the correct level and the spurs were removed to allow her to go back to eating normally again.
Often dental disease in rabbits starts off by not feeding enough roughage in a balanced diet. This over time allows changes in the jaw and teeth that causes pain and problems eating. It is much better to prevent dental disease than to treat it “after the horse has bolted”.
Tipples now comes in for a dental check on a regular basis and is happy little bunny!
If you would like more information on feeding your rabbit, this is a great article on Veterinarypartner.com - Rabbit Care