The oral cavities of 65 rabbits, 35 chinchillas, 38 guinea pigs, 19 degus and 13 prairie dogs suffering from a lack of appetite, hypersalivation, moist dermatitis, swelling of the lower jaw or mild exophthalmos were examined with a paediatric laryngoscope and rigid endoscope. The laryngoscope was safe and satisfactory for a preliminary examination, but changes in the less accessible caudal parts of the cavity could not be identified precisely. A rigid endoscope with 30° optics made it possible to examine all parts of the oral cavity and oropharynx, and make detailed observations of surface lesions on the premolar and molar teeth and the mucosal surface of the gingiva, tongue and hard palate; endoscopy with 70° optics provided an excellent view of the occlusal tooth surfaces, tooth crowns, and buccal mucosa. The collection of biopsy samples, the removal of foreign objects and the correction of malocclusions were greatly simplified by the use of the endoscope owing to the clear visualisation of the procedures, and the risk of injury was minimised. The examinations with a laryngoscope were made effectively on animals that were manually restrained, but a thorough examination with a rigid endoscope required the animals to be anaesthetised.
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