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Turkish Journal of Veterinary & Animal Sciences

DOI

10.3906/vet-1302-46

Abstract

Hedgehogs are increasingly popular pets. As more people come to keep these unique creatures as pets, it is important to know how to properly take care of them, including how to provide the dental care they need. Hedgehogs are omnivorous with very well-developed jaws and short and relatively coarse teeth with a primitive structure. The skull is low with well-developed zygomatic arches. The incisors are sharp, modified forceps that are needed for elevation of small prey. The canines are small and often look like incisors or premolars. The molars and premolars are flat and wide. The teeth have closed root canals and grow for a limited time. Hedgehogs are prone to oral conditions. Captive hedgehogs are often afflicted with tooth and gum disease. Typical clinical signs and appropriate diagnostics and treatment options are discussed here where possible. The intent of this review is to provide the practitioner with a relevant and practical guide to the management of oral and dental disorders in the captive hedgehog. Proper dental care for hedgehogs will help avoid the need for treatment later.

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