In June 2018, Jannet Talbott was doing yard work on her beautiful ranch in Alberta when she saw a small squirrel eating from the bird feeder for her finches. She could tell the squirrel was having trouble and saw something odd sticking out of his head.
Jannet saw that the poor squirrel couldn’t eat nuts and bark like he usually did because his teeth were so long and crooked. Even worse, his four front teeth were curling back into his mouth.
Jannet caught the squirrel and fixed his teeth because she knew he wouldn’t live as long if he couldn’t close his mouth or chew his food.
Since she was a little girl, Jannet Talbott has been helping animals. No matter what kind of animal she saw in trouble, she would bring it home and take care of it.
This is Jannet’s yard, where she takes care of animals. Beautiful, right?
She says, “I feel a strong bond with animals and a duty to speak up for them and be their voice.” Jannet was working in her yard on a sunny day in June 2018 when she saw a cute little saber-tooth squirrel eating from her bird feeder.
But he was having trouble. Then she saw something weird on the side of his face. When Jannet looked more closely, she saw that the squirrel was very skinny, and his teeth were so long that they were curled backward.
Squirrels have four incisors that grow all the time, but when they eat nuts and tree bark, their teeth get worn down. Jannet thought the squirrel was born with crooked teeth because it could only eat the bird food for finches. Because he couldn’t close his mouth or chew his food, his life was in danger.
Jannet picked up the squirrel from the bird feeder with her leather garden gloves. She brought him inside and gave him the name “Bucky.”
She taught herself how to trim a squirrel’s teeth by watching videos on YouTube. Jannet got a better look at her new dental patient after she wrapped him in a towel.
Bucky’s two front teeth were so long and curved that they almost poked him in the eyes. Jannet said he was a “model patient” who stayed calm while the DIY dental work was being done. Because squirrels’ front teeth don’t have nerve endings, Bucky didn’t feel much pain.
She says, “I think animals know when you are trying to help them.”
Janett used a regular cuticle trimmer to cut down Bucky’s long teeth before letting him go back into the wild.
But the next day, when she let him out with his new teeth, she was happy to see him eating whole peanuts.
She watched as Bucky ran up the tree for the first time and rubbed his cheeks on it.
“I saw him sharpen his newly trimmed front teeth on a tree branch… fingers crossed that he keeps using them up.
Jannet is happy to keep an eye on Bucky because she knows his teeth could grow back in the wrong again. If he ever needs help again, she will be there for him.