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Malocclusion Figure 5

Figure 5: Damage to teeth secondary to trauma in 20-month-old rat
Case history and photos


Ari was a 20-month-old, intact male, caged with 3 other rats in a three level wire cage. He experienced reoccurring bouts of severe respiratory infection.

Clinical Signs

After accidentally being stepped on (bare foot), the rat showed profuse bleeding from both his mouth and his nose and was taken to be seen by a vet immediately.


Visual observation by owner following visit to vet: broken upper left incisor.


Vet prescribed pain medication and an antibiotic.


About 3 months after the accident both of the rat's upper incisors were getting shorter, "peeling", and becoming paler. The bottom incisors became overgrown, but due to severe respiratory infection the rat could not tolerate his teeth being trimmed. The rat was fed a soft diet, and treated unsuccessfully with aggressive antibiotics. He was humanely euthanized.


At the time of the accident only one of the upper incisors appeared to be broken. If the rat could have tolerated his bottom incisors being trimmed chances are that the upper teeth would not have shown continued damage.


broken tooth
Photos 1 & 2: Show “peeling” of right upper incisor and broken left upper incisor.

Case history and photo courtesy of Brandi Saxton

Posted on October 28, 2008, 14:39, Last updated on April 10, 2010, 17:26 | Figures

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