Huckleberry the black bear undergoes root canal surgery in California

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Huckleberry the black bear has undergone root canal treatment. The much-loved bear, a resident at the Big Bear Alpine Zoo in California, was treated by specialist animal dentist, Dr David Fagan.

Dr Fagan and his team worked on Huckleberry for four hours, tending to his oral health needs and treating a number of infected teeth using root canal therapy. The black bear was anesthetised during the procedure and Dr Fagan and his assistants used X-ray images to guide them, as they treated four infected teeth and removed a further five teeth.

Huckleberry’s extensive treatment wasn’t the only thing keeping the dental team busy at the zoo, as it has been confirmed that Cascade, the zoo’s mountain lion, has also had some teeth replaced recently. The team removed some of Cascade’s canine teeth, replacing them with titanium implants using a similar technique to implant treatment for human dental patients.

Bob Cisneros, the zoo’s curator, explained that space had been cleared to allow the team of vets to carry out dental X-rays and undertake treatment, and thanked the zoo’s maintenance crew for crafting a sturdy table to support the animals during the procedures.

Both Cascade and Huckleberry will hopefully be much more comfortable following their trips to the dentist.

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