Dental problems in cats can be just as painful as they are in humans. In fact, mouth and tooth pain may cause your feline companion to refuse to eat. Our Pleasant Hill veterinarians discuss how to clean your cat's mouth and keep their teeth healthy today.
Your Cat's Dental Health
Cats are very good at hiding their pain. They could be suffering from a painful oral health issue without ever expressing their discomfort. As a result, owners must be aware of their feline companion's oral health and keep their furry companion's teeth clean. By monitoring and cleaning your cat's teeth on a regular basis, you will be able to detect any oral health issues early on and help your cat avoid pain and costly treatment.
How to clean your cat's teeth
Maintaining an oral hygiene routine for your cat on a daily basis may help to keep their teeth and gums healthy for the duration of their lives. To make brushing your cat's teeth at home as simple and stress-free as possible, begin developing an oral hygiene routine for your cat while they are still a kitten. This way, your cat will develop an early tolerance for having their teeth brushed and mouth touched.
The objective is to make brushing your cat's teeth a stress-free and effortless part of her daily routine. Begin by ensuring that your cat is calm and relaxed before proceeding with the following steps:
- Gently lift your cat's lips and use your finger to massage their teeth and gums for a few seconds.
- Don't expect too much from your cat at first. You may only be able to reach a couple of teeth the first few times your try this. That's okay. This is about building trust in your cat to prevent them from becoming agitated.
- Remain calm and give lots of praise and a yummy treat after your teeth-and-gum massage. You're trying to build your cat’s tolerance to the experience, gradually increasing the length of time you spend on the task each day.
- Once your feline friend is used to you massaging their gums each day, you will be able to introduce a soft-bristled toothbrush you can buy from your vet and some special cat toothpaste. Toothpaste can come in a range of excellent flavors for cats like beef or chicken.
- Begin using the toothbrush as slowly as you did the teeth-and-gum massage. Your cat may begin with licking just a small dab of toothpaste from your finger.
Be Patient & Adaptable While Your Cat Gets Used to the Process
How well you clean your cat's teeth depends on your cat's temperament. Relax, be flexible, and adapt your approach to your cat's tolerance level. Some cat owners clean their pets' teeth with gauze, others use a finger brush, and still, others apply a dental gel with their fingers and let it do the work.
When you finally succeed in brushing your cat's teeth, work quickly but stop before your cat becomes irritated. It may take weeks for your kitty to tolerate having all of its teeth cleaned at once.
If your cat is stressed or worried, it may scratch or bite. To help your cat's teeth, consider adding plaque removers to their water, buying them specially designed chew toys, or giving them tasty dental treats.
Yearly Dental Checkups For Cats
Our veterinarians recommend making annual dental care visits to your vet's office a part of your cat's preventative healthcare routine to ensure that their mouth remains pain-free and healthy. Your veterinarian will assess your cat's oral health in conjunction with their overall physical health and inform you if professional dental cleaning or surgery is necessary to restore your cat's health.
Visit our dentistry page to learn more about the veterinary dental services provided at our Pleasant Hill animal hospital.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.