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My little financial sinkhole Jordan apparently has something called malocclusion where her teeth do not meet properly and do not trim themselves down naturally. To be more specific, her right top tooth meets her bottom left tooth, so the other two grow up unchecked.

Because of this, it appears that she may need her teeth trimmed every 2-3 weeks. I'm wondering if people would recommend I try to do this myself, or take her to the vet every few weeks? Anyone have any experience with it?

Also, if I do it myself, what are the tools of the trade? It looks like the vet just used wire snippers of all things.
 

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If I were you, I would take her to the vet for the first few times, and watch very carefully... maybe even get them to show you how to do it, if they will.

I've misplaced my book, but I remember reading that you can do it yourself, and it was a household item that they used to do it... something like toenail clippers... bugger it... where's that book?!

*trundles off to find book*
 

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She's already had it done twice so far. The first time they gassed her (Which really weirded me out when they brought her back since they didn't tell me they were going to do it and she was stumbling all over the place), and the second time they just held her down.

Truthfully this may all be moot since I might not have it in me to hold her down like that. I forgot to mention that she hates being touched at all. She squeaks if you so much as touch her, and putting your hand on her makes her flip out. She won't bite or anything, but she hates it.
 

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I had a rabbit with something like that. And his teeth needed to be trimmed every few weeks. I never personally did it, but my boss did with toenail clippers...Take him first to look and see where to cut. and to get him used to it.
 

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where she doesn't like to even be touched then any method is going to be difficult for this rat but you can do it at home. there are a lot of sites that talk about it if you google it. i'd read up on that so you can get a feel for the different handling methods. i was considering having to do it once myself when one of my rats was getting old and sick. she died before the teeth became an issue however.

but the consenus of the sites i read and the vet i was using at the time was so long as you used something sharp and quick like new toenail clippers or guilotine style dog nail clippers (and the rat cooperates and you are confident) doing this at home can be a simple procedure.

mind you if you have to go to the vet on a routine basis for this they may be willing to work out a discount as the vet really is not needed for this procedure and its quick. they can teach one of the techs or nurses if you aren't comfortable and they are.

good luck to you and your rat
 

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I dont even like trimming my dogs toe-nails!
Trimming teeth! I would Pass out if they made a noise When I did it!
 

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yeah my girl hates me holding her for her nails to be trimmed if i wanted her teeth,GAH. plus if she doesnt like to be touched anyways. I think the vet seems like a good bet.
 

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OK, I found my book, and it says...

To trim a rat's teeth, it's best if one person holds your rat while a second person does the dental work. You can wrap your rat tightly in a towel to restrict his movements. The clippers** should be angled so that the tooth retains its original bevel (look at another rat's teeth for reference). Top teeth should be clipped to a length of 1/4 inch, bottom teeth to 1/2 inch. Be very careful to hold the lips out of the way and make sure the tongue is also out of the way before clipping. After snapping off, the teeth will have jagged edges. If your rat is cooperative, you might try filing his teeth with a nail file. Otherwise, give him bones to chew on to help smooth his teeth.
Before the instructions on how to do it, there are another couple of informative paragraphs about it -

It's a myth that a rat's teeth overgrow unless he has something hard to chew on. Normally, the upper and lower teeth line up and keep each other sharp and the proper length by grinding together. Overgrown teeth can occur only if the teeth are misaligned or broken off, there is nerve or muscle damage in the jaw, or there is a tooth abscess. Disease of the teeth or jaw can prevent a rat from eating hard foods.

Rat teeth don't contain nerves, so trimming them is painless to your pet (although the gums sometimes bleed slightly). The teeth should be trimmed whenever it looks like they are long enough to irritate the mouth or cause difficulty eating. This may be every one to three weeks, depending on the problem. **Dog toenail or human fingernail clippers work best, or your vet can trim your rats teeth.
If anyone is interested, this is from a book called "Rats: Complete Care Made Easy", by Debbie Ducommun.

Good luck if you decide to do it yourself! :)
 

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You're most welcome. Keep us posted.
 

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8O donna, the detailed instructions, especially on taking a file to the teeth afterwards, has completely scared me off the "do it yourself" route
 

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cashewsmama said:
8O donna, the detailed instructions, especially on taking a file to the teeth afterwards, has completely scared me off the "do it yourself" route
I'm sorry! Maybe that's not a bad thing, though... if you'd done it differently to how it's supposed to be done, you might have had problems. :?
 
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