Facts about Squirrel Teeth

I am sure that all of you have seen squirrels. They are really fascinating creatures. The first time that I found myself interested in them is when I saw Ice Age. Hopefully, you can recall Scrat, the character obsessed with acorns. He continuously found himself in unfortunate situations. However, this post is not about Scrat per se. It is about something that I have developed a deep interest in for various reasons. Have you ever wondered how these tiny creatures continuously gnaw on hard nuts? I mean, think about it for a second. How do these soft rodents eat away hard nuts? Well, it is precisely what I will be talking about here. The focus of this article is teeth, squirrel teeth, to be exact. I will be jotting down facts about squirrel teeth, which many of you like me will find interesting. So, pay close attention. Facts About Their Teeth The size of a squirrel’s tooth ranges between 3 – 6 inches. The front teeth never stop growing. Now, you might be wondering that if they never stop growing, why have you never come across one with remarkably long teeth? The reason is that due to continuous gnawing, the teeth are filed and trimmed naturally. Therefore, they are unable to grow beyond the usual 3 – 6 inches. If they do, they grow in a curved path. This prevents the rodent from closing its mouth or even gnaw down on food properly. As a result, these rodents are unable to eat properly and die. Similarly, the teeth might go onto pierce the opposite jaw, which results in immediate death. The front teeth grow 6 inches per year. The grey squirrel has six baby teeth & 22 permanent teeth. However, like humans, the permanent teeth are unable to regrow once lost. These rodents lose their baby teeth between four to five months after birth. Squirrels mostly have four teeth in the front. These are what is referred to as incisors. The remaining 18 teeth are molars. Like us humans, squirrels also suffer from a variety of teeth problems. The most common is misalignment. This leads to issues like overbite or underbite. However, these problems cannot be resolved with treatment. The result is that the squirrels are unable to eat correctly. Eventually, they end up dying. The only course of action is to adopt such a squirrel and trim its teeth regularly. Besides gnawing, the teeth also act as sensory organs. Through their teeth, the squirrels can even assess the temperature. The front part of the incisors is naturally tinted orange. Squirrels are quite social. But there have been cases where they have pierced into a person’s bone. The Ice Age movie and what I mentioned earlier about hard nuts might give the wrong impression about a squirrel’s diet. It must be noted that nuts are not the only diet of squirrels. They also eat plants, fruits, and meat. Some of them are also known to eat smaller snakes. Hopefully, like me, you also found these facts about squirrel teeth informative.

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