Normal side-to-side grinding movements of the jaw during mastication keep the teeth worn down to a proper length.1,5 Teeth wear down approximately 2 to 2.4 mm per week, depending on the rate of tooth growth and attrition.1,5, Dental disease results from any anatomic or physiologic abnormality that interferes with eruption or wear of incisors, cheek teeth, or both. The dental formula of the rabbit is 2(I 2/1, C 0/0, PM 3/2, M 3/3) =28. Dental disease is profoundly common in pet rabbits. D. Mouth gag and cheek dilators. LafeberVet; April 23, 2011. lafeber.com/vet/pain-management-in-small-mammals. Vet Times November 1, 2011. vettimes.co.uk/article/recognising-and-managing-pain-in-small-mammals-and-exotics/. Mammals have teeth of different sizes and shapes, a condition known as heterodonty, allowing different teeth to be specialized for different tasks. When rabbits are fed an inappropriate diet, their teeth can overgrow, resulting in malocclusions and other abnormalities. How many teeth do adult rabbits have? The dental formula of pikas is: I2/1; C0/0; P3/2; M2/3. They have 6 incisor teeth and 22 cheek teeth (molars and premolars). If pellets are fed, they should be timothy hay based, not alfalfa based.5 Pellets require a less desirable chewing motion of the jaw, not the grinding motion required for fibrous grasses and hays.5 Mixed-cereal foods are also not recommended because it is impossible to prevent rabbits from selectively feeding.5, In addition to proper nutrition practices, owners can be educated about acquiring their pet rabbits from breeding stock without a history of dental disease in their lineage. (B) Diastema. BOX 1 Positioning Guidelines for Dental Radiography in Rabbits7,8 The success of performing an oral examination on an unsedated rabbit varies depending on the stress level and cooperation of the rabbit. Because the formula is for one side of the mouth the total number of teeth is the total in the formula x 2. The dental formula of rabbit is 2 (I2/1 C0/0 PM3/2 M3/3). Since the patient will most likely be masking any signs of illness or discomfort, information obtained from the owner about how the animal has been acting in its normal environment will be helpful. The correct incisor settings in rabbits are such that when their jaws are at rest, the lower incisors should rest behind the upper incisors, i.e., “ the mandibular incisors are situated behind the first larger set of maxillary incisors in occlusion with the peg teeth.” Some of the common causes of incisor malocclusion include the following: Maxillary brachygnathism Maxillary brachygnathism is characterized by shorter upper jaws relativ… Manicinelli E. Recognising and managing pain in small mammals and exotics. Teeth are very important to an animal as they are used for eating, grooming and defense. The lack of canine teeth creates an elongated diastema between the incisors and premolars. The occlusal surface of the cheek teeth will appear to match this line in healthy rabbits. Guinea pigs, which normally give high-pitched squeals when handled, also tend to be quiet during handling while painful. The fiber in bunnies diet is also important in ensuring gut motility and a healthy gut while eliminating the chances of GI stasis.eval(ez_write_tag([[580,400],'petsmentor_com-medrectangle-3','ezslot_11',126,'0','0'])); Since they have a small blind spot angle right in front of their mouth area, due to their eye location, they use their sensitive whiskers (vibrissae) on their lips to find food. The lateral and dorsal surfaces of the cheek teeth are difficult or impossible to evaluate in this fashion, and small dental lesions are easily missed.1, An endoscope may also be used to view the cheek teeth. Radiography is an essential diagnostic tool that should be performed for all patients with suspected dental disease.1 The bulk of the teeth and the supporting structures is below the gumline, hidden from view during gross oral examination. Acquired causes of dental disease include trauma, systemic disease, neoplasia, and improper nutrition.2 Jaw fractures and broken teeth are common traumas.2 If not healed properly, changes in the jaw and occlusion of the teeth may result, leading to improper attrition of teeth and subsequent dental disease. The crowns of the cheek teeth are relatively simple, with transverse basins separated by enamel ridges. When the jaw is at rest, the mandibular incisors should meet the peg teeth directly behind the maxillary incisors.1, The oral cavity of rabbits is small, making it impossible to examine the cheek teeth without instrumentation and sedation. In some patients, it may be useful to open the mouth slightly with a small cotton prop to separate the occlusal surfaces of the maxillary and mandible teeth. Use V-trays and foam wedges to prevent rotation of the patient. Occasionally, an abscess is detectable only on radiography or CT.1 Treating a rabbit with an abscess can be difficult because the pus has a remarkably thick-to-solid consistency.1 Primary treatment of an abscess is to remove the cause, which is 1 or more infected teeth.1 Further treatment of the abscess varies by veterinarian preference but may include repeated lancing and flushing of the abscess, systemic antibiotics, complete surgical excision of the abscess, and antibiotic bead impregnation.1,3 Analgesia and nutritional support may be indicated in patients that have an abscess.1, Proper nutrition and husbandry are essential for the prevention of dental disease. Web Design by PHOS Creative, BAS, RVT, VTS (Exotic Companion Animals), ISU Lloyd Veterinary Medical Center, Ames, IA, Canine Uveitis and the Veterinary Technician, Luxating Patellas: Pathology and Treatment Options. Rabbits belong to the order of lagomorphs along with hares. Accessed October 2016. There is a small pair of incisors called "peg teeth" directly caudal to the primary maxillary incisors. Use tape or foam wedges on either side of the head to prevent rotation if necessary. LafeberVet; April 23, 2011. lafeber.com/vet/pain-management-in-small-mammals. The Veterinary Technician’s Oath. The I stands for incisor teeth. The International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) describes pain as “an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage.”1 Lichtenberger and Ko indicate any “animal should be assumed to be experiencing pain in any condition expected to produce pain in human beings.”2 Therefore, when working with a patient, it is reasonable to ask yourself, “Would this illness or procedure cause me to feel pain?” If your answer is yes, then it is likely the illness or procedure will also cause the animal pain. The veterinary technician oath states, “I solemnly dedicate myself to aiding animals and society by providing excellent care and services for animals, by alleviating animal suffering, and promoting public health.”5 Veterinary technicians play an integral role in recognizing pain in patients and act as patient advocates to alleviate pain and suffering in all animals. Their irregular occlusal surface gives them a rough surface over which fibrous and course food is ground using side-to-side chewing movement (to crush and shear food). However, once one tooth is affected, over time, the dental disease will affect all the other teeth. Rabbits do not have canine teeth.1–4 Instead, there is a space between the incisors and premolars called the diastema (FIGURE 1).1–5 The premolars and molars are anatomically identical, making differentiation of each tooth challenging.2 Thus, the premolars and molars are simply called the cheek teeth.2 The dental formula for a rabbit is I2/1, C0/0, P3/2, and M3/3, for a total of 28 teeth.1–5, Rabbit teeth are cylindrical and have a natural curve as they grow.1,5 The occlusal surface of the maxillary cheek teeth curves buccally, and the occlusal surface of the mandibular cheek teeth curves lingually.1 They are aradicular; that is, both the incisors and the cheek teeth have open apices, never forming true tooth roots.1 Rabbit teeth are also elodont, meaning that they continually grow throughout the life of the rabbit.1 Germinal tissue, located at the apices of the teeth, continuously forms enamel to cover each tooth as the teeth constantly grow.3 Because of this, there is no anatomic difference in the tooth above or below the gum line.3 The enamel is free of pigment, resulting in white teeth.1, Rabbits have a blind spot directly in front of their mouth, so they rely on sensitive vibrissae on their lips to find food.4 Food items are grasped with prehensile lips, bitten off or chopped with the incisors, and moved to the cheek teeth by the tongue.4,5 Occlusal surfaces of the cheek teeth are irregular, providing a rough surface for grinding coarse, fibrous material. Dorsoventral It can produce a wide variety of clinical signs and varies in severity. References Rabbits do not have canine teeth. Dog. Use foam or rolled hand towels to support the neck of the patient and tilt the patient’s nose toward the table top, achieving a ventrodorsal position. There is also another useful downloadable assessment chart which will be helpful just like the one above and will ensure your bunny’s oral and dental health. okvta.org/veterinary-technicians-oath.html. In these animals, the incisors and molars have different functions, i.e., there is the “cheeks fold in behind the incisors separating the front of the oral cavity from the more caudal section, thereby permitting separate function of the incisors and back teeth.”. FIGURE 2. A black line (A) extends from the tip of the nasal bone to the occipital protuberance. Two yellow lines (C) highlight the medial cortex of the mandible, which should appear straight, smooth, and symmetric. This formula can be very helpfull when it comes to identifiying a skull or if you have a bottom jaw of an animal and have no clue what it is. Rabbits are unique in that they have 4 maxillary incisors (101, 102, 201, and 202) and 2 mandibular incisors (301 and 401) (FIGURE 1).1–5 Two of the maxillary incisors (102 and 202) are significantly smaller and are called the peg teeth.1–5 The peg teeth are located directly behind the larger set of 2 incisors (101 and 201).1–5 The maxillary incisors are typically shorter than the mandibular incisors and have a longitudinal groove on the labial surface that runs the length of each incisor tooth.1–5, When the jaw is at rest, the mandibular incisors are situated behind the first larger set of maxillary incisors in occlusion with the peg teeth, and the cheek teeth do not touch (FIGURE 2).1–5 Lack of contact between the molars is due to anisognathism, meaning the mandible is narrower than the maxilla.1,5. 1–4 Instead, there is a space between the incisors and premolars called the diastema (FIGURE 1). Place the patient in sternal recumbency. The following clinical signs may be associated with dental disease in rabbits: FIGURE 3. Rabbits are a prey species, so they tend to hide clinical signs of illness until they are remarkably debilitated.2 Clinical signs of dental disease are directly related to the severity of the disease.2 If the dental disease is mild, the rabbit may not show any signs. iasp-pain.org/Taxonomy#Pain. Download yours today to monitor occlusion, gingiva, mobility, furcation, calculus, and plague since they are all important in ensuring healthy rabbit teeth. Cheek teeth should not extend outside of these reference lines. History and husbandry information about the patient should be obtained from the owner using open-ended questioning techniques upon arrival at the veterinary clinic. What is the deciduous dental formula for rabbits? The diastema is typical in not only lagomorphs but also in rodents. Place the patient in dorsal recumbency. The incisors are examined by pulling the lower lip down with the thumb and forefinger of one hand while using the thumb and forefinger of other hand to pull the upper lip up and aside. The dental formula is 2 x (I 2/1, C 0/0, P 3/2, M 3/3) = 28. Oklahoma Veterinary Technician Association. (C) Four maxillary incisors, including the 2 smaller peg teeth situated directly behind the larger set of incisors, and 2 mandibular incisors. Powered by WordPress. Recognizing and assessing pain in small mammals can be challenging. The occlusal surface of the cheek teeth will appear to match this line in healthy rabbits. This is one of the physiological adaptations that these lagomorphs have, and it is important in supporting the kind of diet they depend on. While the jaw is in resting position, upper and lower premolars and molars do not touch since the lower jaw is narrower than the upper one (anisognathism). The Veterinary Technician’s Oath. Dorsoventral view, normal anatomy Sarah earned a Bachelor of Applied Science in Veterinary Nursing from St. Petersburg College and the Veterinary Technician Specialty (Exotic Companion Animals). Once they have sensed their food, they use their prehensile lips to grasp the food before incisors cuts or bites it and moves it to premolars and molars using their tongue for grinding, chewing or mastication. The article you have read is no longer available for 1 hour of continuing education credit. The term _________ means the teeth have open apices, never forming true tooth roots. Yes. Brown S. Rabbit dental disease. A yellow line (C) highlights the mandibular cortical bone. To compensate for the wearing down, all their permanent teeth are termed as eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'petsmentor_com-medrectangle-4','ezslot_2',110,'0','0']));elodont, i.e., they are ever-growing with open roots, i.e., they have open apices that do not form true roots (they are aradicular). However, the endoscope permits substantial magnification, making small lesions easily detectable. Use of anatomical reference lines. Use tape or foam wedges on either side of the head to prevent rotation if necessary. The deciduous dental formula, including the first incisors, may be stated: ï(ab/a) C(o/o) Wdefjef), with d the late erupting maxillary molar. Furthermore, the silicate deposits (phytoliths) found in large amounts on these grasses, their fibrous nature, and the larger volume required mean prolonged chewing. Rabbit is herbivorous animal and depends on cellulose based food. In a normal, healthy rabbit, the teeth wear down _____ mm per week. The formula for permanent rabbit teeth is: 2 (I2/1 C0/0 P3/2 M2-3/3). Veterinary technicians play a vital role in educating rabbit owners about prevention and early detection, as well as assisting veterinarians with diagnosing and treating dental disease. Bunnies teeth i.e., they are diphyodont. If a small mammal is unable to mask clinical signs of pain and discomfort, it should be considered severely debilitated. Rabbit dental formula for those really interested; 2 (I2/1 C0/0 PM3/2 M3/3) = 28 The 2 in the front of the formula indicates the left and right side of the mouth. Pull the front legs caudally and extend the head. Harcourt-Brown F. The progressive syndrome of acquired dental disease in rabbits. The ventral lower jaw should be horizontal to the table top. These patients require anesthesia to perform a thorough, stress-free oral examination. All have a diastema between the incisors and cheek teeth. 2001. Yes. Use foam or rolled hand towels to support the neck of the patient and tilt the patient’s nose toward the table top, achieving a ventrodorsal position. The females have eight to ten mammae. History and husbandry information about the patient should be obtained from the owner using open-ended questioning techniques upon arrival at the veterinary clinic. Rabbits have 2 on top and one on the bottom jaw. She is a member of the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America and International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. Use foam pads, rolled hand towels, or tape to assist with positioning the rabbit’s skull perfectly horizontal to the table. Every rabbit that presents to the veterinary hospital should undergo a physical examination that includes an oral examination. The roots of the maxillary cheek teeth are in close proximity to the periorbital space. Two yellow lines (C) highlight the medial cortex of the mandible, which should appear straight, smooth, and symmetric. The lack of canine teeth creates an elongated diastema between the incisors and premolars. We will answer that shortly. Deciduous don't have any molars. While checking and caring for your rabbit’s teeth, a dental chart may be handy. By inserting the speculum or cone through the diastema into the oral cavity, the occlusal surface of the cheek teeth may be briefly examined, although the viewing window is limited. The dental formula of the rabbit is: 2 x ( I 2 / 1 C 0 / 0 P 3 / 2 M 3 / 3). Pollock C. Pain management in small mammals. Also, the auxiliary incisors prevent the lower incisors from injuring the palate. If positioned correctly, both of the patient’s eyes will be horizontal to the table. Accessed October 2016. They also have a long crown (hypsodont). Otherwise, their teeth will be overgrown if they do not have fibrous diets. Systemic disease that causes any change in a rabbit’s normal diet and eating patterns may lead to dental disease.1–4 A systemic disease characterized by altered calcium levels may result in changes in jawbones and altered tooth placement.3,5, Improper nutrition is the most common cause of dental disease in pet rabbits.3 Improper food items prevent normal tooth wear, eventually leading to dental disease.3,5. The rabbits weigh between 0.7 kg and 1.2 kg and are between 35 cm and 39 cm in body length. She has fostered birds for the Des Moines Animal Rescue League since 2014. Use sandbags to apply gentle pressure to the back of the patient’s neck to ensure the head is not tilted ventrally. Place the patient in lateral recumbency. Learn more in Dental Anatomy of Rabbits and Rodents by Dr. David Crossley. 22. Ferrets are reluctant to curl up while resting and commonly squint their eyes. In some patients, it may be useful to open the mouth slightly with a small cotton prop to separate the occlusal surfaces of the maxillary and mandible teeth. The part embedded into the jaw is often referred to as a reserve crown. They consist of the premolars and molars. Mammalian heterodont dentition is expressed by a ‘dental formula’. Dental formula: A dental formula is a standard number of teeth that a certain mammal has. A second black line (B) runs parallel to the first, extending from the rostral end of the hard palate to one-third of the height of the tympanic bulla. Use V-trays and foam wedges to prevent rotation of the patient. Diagnosis and treatment of dental disease in pet rabbits. There is no one objective way to tell if a small mammal is feeling pain, as individual animals display different clinical signs. To compensate for this, these species have permanent teeth that grow and erupt continuously, never producing anatomical roots. Place the patient in lateral position. The formula for permanent rabbit teeth is: 2 (I2/1 C0/0 P3/2 M2-3/3). Observation of the patient during the interview or in a quiet room before handling may reveal signs of pain or discomfort. Cheek teeth should not extend outside of these reference lines. Information on a patient’s eating habits may reveal early dental disease.1 Rabbits without sufficient roughage in their diet may not be grinding their teeth properly, predisposing them to overgrown teeth and dental disease.1. Another black line (B) extends from the lateral margin of the mandibular incisors to the lateral wall of the tympanic bulla on the opposite side. The 2 in the front of the formula indicates the left and right side of the mouth. The roots of anatomically normal maxillary cheek teeth will not extend past this line. Use sandbags to apply gentle pressure to the back of the patient’s neck to ensure the head is not tilted ventrally. All humans have four types of teeth: incisors, canines, premolars, and molars. International Association for the Study of Pain. Boehmer E, Crossley D. Objective interpretation of dental disease in rabbits, guinea pigs and chinchillas. Another black line (B) extends from the lateral margin of the mandibular incisors to the lateral wall of the tympanic bulla on the opposite side. How many teeth do rabbits have? Craniocaudal view of rabbit skull. Another advantage of the endoscope is the ability to take pictures, allowing owners and other members of the veterinary team to see the oral cavity.1, Blood analysis is indicated if systemic disease is suspected or anesthesia is required for a dental procedure.5. Lichtenberger M, Ko J. Anesthesia and analgesia for small mammals and birds. Their deciduous teeth are smaller in size and they erupt while the kit is still in the mother’s womb and they are replaced by permanent adult teeth. In this species there is a single annual molt. The incisors are examined by pulling the lower lip down with the thumb and forefinger of one hand while using the thumb and forefinger of the other hand to pull the upper lip up and aside in similar fashion (FIGURE 5). Dental disease is one of the most common reasons pet rabbits present to veterinary clinics. Before we state their dental formula, we need to elaborate. If you did not know or you assumed that they have 32 teeth like human beings, the truth is that an adult rabbit has 28 teeth forming a natural curve. This answers the question, how teeth do bunnies have. Rabbit mouths exhibit anisognathism, which means that their lower jaw is narrow when compared to the upper. What is the difference between the structure of the cementum in … The International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) describes pain as “an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage.”1 Lichtenberger and Ko indicate any “animal should be assumed to be experiencing pain in any condition expected to produce pain in human beings.”2 Therefore, when working with a patient, it is reasonable to ask yourself, “Would this illness or procedure cause me to feel pain?” If your answer is yes, then it is likely the illness or procedure will also cause the animal pain. Dentition pertains to the development of teeth and their arrangement in the mouth.In particular, it is the characteristic arrangement, kind, and number of teeth in a given species at a given age. Overgrooming, chewing at the location of pain, and self-mutilation are observed in small mammals, most commonly in rodents and sugar gliders. FIGURE 5. Rabbit owners should be instructed to feed unlimited high-fiber foods.3,5 Grass, a good-quality timothy hay, and fibrous, green, leafy vegetables are favorable foods that are high in fiber and encourage the grinding motions of the jaw that benefit attrition of the teeth.7 Rabbits require a diet that provides enough calcium for sufficient mineralization of their continually growing teeth and surrounding bone structures, but not so much calcium that urinary tract disease is a risk.5 The ideal amount of dietary calcium for a rabbit is 0.5% to 1.0%.5, Barn-dried hay may not contain as much vitamin D as sun-dried hays.5 Alfalfa hay is very high in calcium.7 It is a good choice for rapidly growing young rabbits but should not be fed as a sole source of hay for adult rabbits.5 If possible, rabbits should be allowed to graze outside on a variety of grasses and weeds while basking in the sun, which helps prevent a vitamin D deficiency.5, Pellets are not a necessary part of a rabbit’s diet. 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