Is Malo my fault?

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New member
Jan 18, 2023
Castro Valley
I'm afraid my chinchilla might have a problem with overgrown roots bc I noticed a couple days ago his eyes began to bulge. I've heard when it gets to this level, it's less cruel just to have him put down. I haven't gone to my vet appointment yet but I will soon. He's about 4, but I got him when he was a little over 1 and don't know his origin before he was placed into my care by owners who couldn't manage him (i think i heard they got him from your average pet store, like petco). He's had a good life, I've been following guidelines carefully for care and he's got lots to chew on. This really came out of nowhere and before I explain to my parents that he'll probably have to be put down, I want to know if perhaps there's something that possibly caused this of my doing, or is this due to poor breeding as I've heard can happen.
In young chins like yours the most common cause is poor breeding, genetic malo normally shows up by the time the chin is 2 but 4 isn't that much older, especially if it is mild it can take longer to cause a noticeable problem. Malocclusion (malo) is literally misalignment of the teeth, and just like humans chins can be born with teeth that don't line up especially if the parents have bad teeth too, unlike humans though they don't make braces for chins. So no, it likely has nothing to do with anything you did. Aside from bad breeding it can be caused by feeding a poor/inappropriate diet that has cause tooth decay or loss, not providing things to chew, not providing hay, or an injury to the mouth or jaw.

I would definately get a vet check first before assuming the worst though, it could be something else like an eye infection or something else that is treatable. Is he showing other signs of malo like drooling, pawing at the mouth, watery eyes, weight loss, etc?