Hamsters are part of the rodent family and that means they have a set of mean gnashers!
Now hamster teeth will grow constantly just like our hair or our nails. This means they NEED things to chew to wear them down and keep them healthy. Everything needs a little TLC now and then!
So just for all you hamster lovers out there, here is hammy-dentistry 101.
This is a picture of Caspers not-so-pearly whites teeth.
Please be aware I know how uncomfortable and unnatural he looks in this position but its just for a few seconds at a time and its how vets examine their teeth safely. Its a little uncomfortable for them to have their teeth shown but its not painful or bad for them in anyway. If you’ve ever seen a hamster yawn youll know how wide they can really get their mouths! (Ill have to try capture a yawn for you to see)
The colour is actually healthy for a hamster.If any humans teeth were this colour, you’d be sure to get some whitening on that right away! But for hamsters, the yellower the better! I am not exactly sure why this is but their vet assured me I didnt need to rush out and find hamster toothbrushes anytime soon as white teeth can be a sign of ill-health.
As you can see, they have two front shorter teeth along the top jaw and two elongated teeth along the bottom. What you cant see from this picture, is the rows of little ‘molars’ toward the back of their mouths. So they dont just have 4 teeth I promise.
If youve ever seen your hamster chew their cage bars, youll notice they are actually using these molars not their front teeth.
Like I said at the start, hamster teeth constantly grow and so need to be worn down. This means your hamsters need chewtoys and dried foods to ensure this process happens.
This brings me neatly onto chew sticks.
Chew sticks are perfect to keep your hamsters teeth in ship-shape as well as being yummy and keeping them happy and fed.
You can get chew sticks in packs of two for just a few quid. I get my chewsticks from Pets at Home for £2.50. It lasts a whole week or even two sometimes and subsequently never had any issues with their oral health.
I am in the UK and I am not so clued up with products further afield so if you are from another country, please feel free to recommend any chew products you use in the comment section below!
Dexter doesnt always keep his chew stick hung up to the top bars of his cage but he demolishes it all the same!!
Their favourite chew sticks are the honey ones so I’m guessing they have a sweet tooth just like their owner! But the ones they actually have at the moment are fruit ones. They love them equally as they always get stripped right down to the wooden centre! Definitely recommend these! 😀
If you are seriously worried about your hamsters teeth, take a quick visit to the vets. And if you dont give your furries anything to chew on then get shopping! Not having chew toys will only encourage them to gnaw the bars of their cage so give them something new to chew??
Till tomorrow folks!