Read About Small Pet Dental Care

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Dental Care For Your Small Pet

Dental care for your small pet is more important than you think it is. If you are a new small pet owner, you should know that these little creatures have open-rooted teeth. This means they have incisor teeth (four front teeth, top and bottom) that can continuously grow - if not taken cared of properly. Rats, mice, hamsters, and guinea pigs all have open-rooted teeth, but with good diet and chew toys, dental care for your small pet can be properly managed.

Now, your job is to wear down these open-rooted teeth to keep them from growing. Feed him with nutritious food, preferably with a commercial diet, mixed with various grains, hay, and vegetables. By doing this, you will not only provide great dental care for your small pet, you will also have healthy, well-nourished pets. In understanding small pet nutrition, you should know that while small pets like rabbits, mice, rats, and guinea pigs are predominantly herbivores, each has its own dietary requirements that's unique from the others. Rats, for example, require a high fiber diet that can be satisfied by commercial mouse and rat food, along with small amounts of fruits, vegetables such as carrots, broccoli, apples, and seeds. Guinea pigs, on the other hand, do best with pellets, unlimited grass hay, and vegetables. Unlike rats, guinea pigs do not digest nuts and seeds well, so better stay out of it if you have these pigs as pets.

Chew items will also help a lot in dental care for your small pet. Being the natural chewer that he is, he'd be more than happy to munch on chew blocks, sticks, or chemical-free branches. For rodents, gnaw bones make great treats while mimicking bones that are usually found in the wild. Wooden bunks also make great chew toys, while doubling as comfortable resting area. For rabbits, alfalfa cubes help peak their interest, while also providing adequate nutrition. Timothy hay also makes a great chewing treat, especially for older rabbits. Aside from a great solution to dental care for your small pet, chew items also keep your little friend busy enough to gnaw on other cage items.

You will know if dental care for your small pet is inadequate if he develops tongue or cheek ulcers, or he if has had difficulty eating. Overgrown teeth can cause great pain to your pet, he may altogether refuse to eat hard food. If he is unable to keep food inside his mouth, or if he is constantly drooling, then those are other signs of overgrown teeth. Further, elongated incisors may also irritate the sinus and cause runny nose. Overgrown incisors can also put pressure on your poor pet's tear ducts, making him constantly teary eyed; and in serious cases, cause the development of abscess in tear ducts which eventually cause your pet's eyes to bulge out! What a terrible, terrible sight (and this is not just pun)!

Before you get chew toys for your little friend, remember that like humans, these little creatures also have different personalities and temperaments. Try to get to know your little friend more and determine which chew toys he likes. This way, you can provide great dental care for your small pet while also giving him the kind of entertainment and nourishment he enjoys.