February is National Pet Dental Health Month! Let us celebrate this by making sure our cat's teeth and mouth are healthy and safe from diseases!
Establishing an excellent dental upkeep regimen for your cat from a very early age is vital to help keep them from dental disease in cats. It will not only stop your pet cat from developing conditions like gingivitis, and cat gum disease, but it will also keep their breath from smelling foul!
Why Is Cat Dental Care Important?
In the wild, cats would naturally cleanse their teeth by chewing on bones or grass, but domestic cats frequently do not have an appropriate means to replicate this behavior. Furthermore, our cats cannot verbally connect with us to let us know that they have discomfort or symptoms of pain. This makes it particularly essential to develop preventative wellness routines rather than reactive ones when dealing with pets, particularly their oral health care.
It's also crucial to consistently examine the state of your cat's teeth and even gums to see if they're continually looking healthy.
Teeth and gum troubles happen in eight out of ten cats over the age of three. This is because cats tend to accumulate microorganisms, particles, and plaque from the food they consume. In time, germ accumulation hardens to form tartar, which can irritate their gums and ultimately cause gingivitis and even tooth loss. In extreme instances, the tartar scale can come to be so severe that it's irreversible. In which case, cat tooth extraction is needed to ease the pain.
Discomfort and swelling in cats' mouths can make it hard for them to drink or eat. Additionally, the bacteria can enter their bloodstream, which can cause heart disease cats and may harm their kidneys and other vital organs.
This gradual destruction of gums, teeth, and the structures that hold teeth in place is called 'periodontal disease' and is the usual condition of adult dogs and cats. The good news is that dental disease is mostly preventable. To protect your pet cat's oral (and overall) health, there are a couple of things you should do. These include both regular home and annual veterinary oral treatment.
Tell-Tale Indicators of Feline Dental Issues
Between visits to the vet, be sure to check your feline for these important indications:
- Foul breath: an abnormally strong smell may indicate gastrointestinal problems or an oral condition
- Hemorrhaging, lesions in mouth, or a dark red line along the gum tissues
- Gum inflammation: inflamed gum tissues can result in tooth loss, lack of appetite and also can be an indicator of kidney disease or feline immunodeficiency virus
- Ulcers on the gum tissues
- Extreme drooling, blood in saliva, or pawing at the mouth area
- Trouble chewing food or not wanting to eat
A healthy feline's teeth should be clean, white, and devoid of breaking. Their gums should not have any sores or lesions and should be a healthy pink color without any redness, swelling, or hemorrhaging.
You need to also check the back of your feline's mouth for ulcers, swelling, sores, or bumps within their mouth for foreign items, such as string—any unusual items the need to be examined as soon as possible by a veterinarian.
Your cat's breath shouldn't have a foul odor. If it does, this can be an indicator of infection either in their mouth or elsewhere in their body. Hence, you need to take them to a veterinarian for an examination if you see a change in the scent of their breath within a relatively short time frame. Persistent halitosis can suggest a severe tooth condition that will need a cat tooth extraction and another specialized type of procedure.
Likewise, it is essential to be sharp to any other indications that could show oral condition, such as drooling, trouble swallowing, pawing at the face, or modifications to your pet cat's eating patterns or weight.
Take your feline to the veterinarian promptly for a dental checkup if you see any of these indications. Your vet may advise a specialized oral exam, starting with blood work to determine if your cat is healthy enough to go through an anesthetic. If it is, your vet will undoubtedly provide the drug as well as start extensive dental cleanings or may even perform tooth extractions.
How to Brush a Feline's Teeth at Home
The gold criterion for pet cat oral treatment at home is cat teeth cleaning. Here are a few ideas for you:
- Get your feline used to the concept of having her teeth brushed. Keep each session brief. Delicately massage your cat's teeth with your finger or a cotton bud.
- Please make use of a toothbrush explicitly developed for cats; it's smaller than a human toothbrush and has softer bristles. Finger brush are likewise readily available.
- Use toothpaste created for cats; using human toothpaste can cause upset your feline's stomach.
- If your feline has swollen gums, brushing her teeth will hard and might even be painful. Check out the vet for a brief examination before you start cleaning.
- Additionally, make sure to compensate your cat for being so patient while you brush her teeth with either a treat or play. This will allow your cat to know that they did excellent work! It will also help make future brushings easier on you both.
Daily brushing is essential to maintaining your feline's teeth and gums healthy. Grownup felines can be pretty immune to having their proper cat teeth cleaned, so it's an excellent concept to get them used to this procedure and while they're still kittens. Support them from behind so they really feel comforted and supported, carefully tilt their head back, lift their chin to open their mouths, and make it very easy for you to access their teeth.1 Never make use of dental floss as it poses a severe danger to pet cats because of the risk of ingesting. You can also try to dip your finger in the water from a can of tuna to make the experience a lot more favorable for them.
Alternatives to Cleaning Your Pet Cat's Teeth
In addition to cleaning your cat's teeth, you can take various other actions to guarantee that their teeth are clean. Chew toys and oral gels, together with special treats and food, can reduce the formation of tartar and prevent the onset of dental conditions.
When it comes to pet cat dental care, some human intervention is most definitely required. Thankfully, it is simple to take a few specific actions to deal with your pet cat's mouth when you get them used to having their teeth cleaned up at an early stage in life. Your vet will also suggest and supply you with a range of products that will keep their teeth and oral health in good shape. Do a yearly dental care appointment to stop the beginning of the dental disease.