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Dental Hygiene for Hamsters

May 15, 2014

Consider all the things your hamster uses his teeth for: eating, breaking seeds and nuts, chewing, burrowing, building, and even more. Obviously, a hamster’s dental health is of vital importance to his overall well-being! Use your San Jose vet’s advice to keep your hamster’s oral hygiene in tip-top shape.

How Do I Check My Hamster’s Teeth?

With time and patience, you should be able to check your hamster’s teeth from the comfort of your own home. Gently hold your hamster in one hand, then use the other to pull back the skin around the neck. This should cause your hamster’s mouth to open, exposing the large front incisors. By holding your hamster in this position briefly, you can get a look at your hamster’s teeth, gums, and mouth. Ask your vet for a demonstration of this procedure.

How Often Should I Do This?

A weekly dental check will work well for most hamsters and their owners. As with all health concerns, the sooner you discover a problem, the better. Keep your vet’s phone number close by, and set up an appointment as soon as you notice anything amiss with your hamster’s dental health. Also call the clinic if you notice your hamster not eating, losing weight, or acting abnormally.

What Am I Looking for, Exactly?

Be on the lookout for misaligned teeth, bleeding, inflammation, redness, and swelling around the gums. If you see anything you don’t think is right, call your vet’s office for a professional opinion. In many cases, a quick tooth-trim is very beneficial for hamsters and may solve the problem entirely. This procedure is quick and painless, so get your hamster in for an appointment as soon as you can.

Can I Prevent Dental Problems in My Hamster?

There are two main ways to help keep your hamster’s dental health in order at home: feed a quality diet and provide plenty of good chew toys. Great hamster diets are widely available in retail stores and pet supply shops. Find hardwood chew toys and gnawing objects at vet’s offices and pet stores to keep your hamster’s teeth properly filed down.

Your San Jose veterinarian can offer more help with your hamster’s dental health. Call today with any questions.