Purrfect teeth

Posted on: 31 July 2018 by 50connect editorial

Good dental care is not just for humans. Spot the tell-tale signs of gum disease and tooth decay before it becomes a health risk to our cat.

Cat dental check

Cat owners are being encouraged to get their feline's teeth checked in order to maintain good dental health for pet.

Dental disease is very common amongst cats with heavy build-up of plaque or calculus on their teeth being the most prevalent disorder. Currently, more than a third of cats coming into the care of Cats Protection's 30 UK Shelters each year are in need of dental treatment, with this figure being higher in certain parts of the country.

Similar to humans, cats need regular dental check-ups from the age of three. Annual vaccination booster time is a good time to ask a vet to perform a dental check, too. It is important that dental problems are treated promptly, as secondary complications can develop if left untreated with infection spreading to affect a pet's vital organs.

Common symptoms of feline dental problems

  • Bad breath
  • Failure to groom
  • Loss of appetite (particularly when a pet turns away from its food)
  • Irritability
  • Regurgitation of food

Practical dental tips for cats

Preventative measures for feline dental disease 

  • The use of 'cat toothpastes' (gel-like preparations) available from veterinary practices and to be used with veterinary guidance
  • Feeding puss with a dental care dry food formula
  • Seeking veterinary advice and treatment at the first sign of dental problems
  • Regular veterinary check-ups

Many cats do not like having their teeth brushed; however, if brushing is started when they are young kittens tolerance levels increase.

If your cat is older and is already trouble with his/her teeth, it is not the end of the world. Cats can survive and eat with few, or even no teeth. Indeed, in many cases, it may be preferable for a senior cat to have its teeth removed under general anaesthetic rather than suffer with ongoing dental disease.

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