Micah Feeding

Vet Speak

In this section, Dr. Micah Kohles, Oxbow’s Director of Veterinary Science and Outreach, answers all of your animal health related questions.  If you have a question for Dr. Kohles regarding the health or behavior of your small animal, send it to web@oxbowanimalhealth.com.

I went to a veterinarian who claimed to have experience with guinea pigs, but obviously did not. She cut my pig's teeth too short! Do guinea pigs really need regular teeth cutting? And how soon will his teeth grow back to normal? Is it likely that he is in pain? Thank you!

I’m so sorry to hear that.  Most guinea pigs being fed a correct diet do not routinely need their teeth trimmed.  There certainly are animals which experience excessive teeth growth that can only be corrected by dental trimming, but this is the exception and not the rule.  It is also important to note that both a guinea pig’s incisors (front teeth) and molars (back or “cheek” teeth) grow throughout their entire life.  If they do have elongated incisor teeth they often also have molar dental disease as well, which needs to be evaluated.  A complete oral exam, including looking at the molar teeth, is difficult to do in an awake guinea pig.  It is difficult to say when they will return to normal, as this depends on how fast they grow, which is somewhat unique for each pig.  It will also depend on how far they were cut back.  I hope the little one recovers well, and please keep me up to date.

Sincerely,

Dr. Micah Kohles, DVM
Director of Veterinary Science and Outreach
Oxbow Animal Health