It is best to find out how the crack happened because chipped teeth can be a serious condition that could lead to pain and infection. Do look around her cage and accessories inside the cage. Look out for excessive biting and chewing of the cage bars, litter trays, food bowls or any toys that are not rabbit-safe. Remove any suspicious items.
Also, avoid fruits or treats that are high in sugar, such as bananas. The sugars are not good for your bun’s digestive tract and can result in disturbances in gut function. In addition, bananas are high in potassium, which can cause further complication to its kidney and muscle functions.
Chipped teeth can lead to pain as your rabbit bites and chews on her food. Although they may not show it, rabbits are very sensitive to pain, which may result in discomfort, reluctance to eat and consequently, abnormal defecation and worse, gut stasis. It is, unfortunately, not safe to file the teeth by yourself at home, so please consult your vet immediately. It is especially urgent because you also mentioned that there is a speck of brown at the crack of each tooth. This may indicate dried blood, residual food or even possible infection that is tracking along the nerve and blood vessel of each tooth. Such infection can lead to dangerous tooth root infection that can result in abscess and bone infection.
The vet will give your bun a complete dental examination that may include a illuminated scope that goes into your rabbit’s mouth to survey the teeth. This can be done without sedation. However, if there is suspicion of infection that involves the tooth roots, then sedation or general anaesthesia will be required. Dental and skull x-rays may also be performed to check the integrity of the dental roots, dental sockets and the bone around it. Your vet may also perform dental filing and reconstructive repair work to correct the uneven dental crowns. Antibiotics and pain relief are often prescribed to prevent infection and further discomfort.
My bunny was licking (instead of biting) her bananas recently, so I checked her teeth and realised her top incisors were badly chipped. It looks like there’s a speck of brown on the break of each tooth. Surprisingly, she still eats her hay and pellets fine. Is filing teeth at home a viable option, and how serious must her condition get in order to justify a trip to the vet?
EXPERT: DR GRACE HENG Veterinary Surgeon B. V (Sydney) Resident Veterinarian at The Joyous Vet