3 Tips For Keeping Your Cat's Teeth Healthy

Tooth decay can make your cat uncomfortable. Just like in humans, cavities can cause chewing or biting to feel painful to your cat. Untreated dental problems can lead to malnourishment if your cat refuses to eat. It can also lead to tooth loss and in some cases, heart disease. Here are three tips you can use to keep your cat's teeth healthy throughout their entire life.

1. Feed your cat dry food.

Dry cat food is healthier for your cat's teeth. The act of crunching through kibble can loosen plaque from your cat's teeth, leading to cleaner, healthier teeth. If your cat prefers wet food, you can still give it to them as a treat. However, you should try to feed them dry food on a regular basis. Some cat owners mix dry kibble into their cat's wet food to provide some textural difference for teeth cleaning purposes.

2. Brush your cat's teeth.

Ideally, you should brush your cat's teeth every day. It's best to start brushing your cat's teeth when they're a kitten since kittens are more open to new experiences. An older cat may be fearful of the process, which will make it more difficult. However, you can train your cat to accept teeth brushing by starting the process slowly.

Initially, you should put some toothpaste on the toothbrush and let your cat sniff and lick it. When they're comfortable with the toothbrush, you can gradually begin to brush their teeth for longer periods of time, until you can brush all of them in one sitting. Always try to avoid stressing your cat during this process, since negative experiences can set back their progress.

3. Take your cat to the dentist.

Even cats need to see the dentist sometimes. Cat dentists specialize in providing care to feline teeth. If your cat has been avoiding their food and pawing at their mouth, that can indicate oral pain. A cat dentist has the tools to diagnose tooth problems in cats. Since cats are unable to cooperate like humans, your pet will need to be put under general anesthesia for the procedure. While they're asleep, their dentist will take x-rays to look for tooth decay. Tooth decay can be treated by extracting damaged teeth. If the issue lies in your cat's gum tissue, their dentist can fix it by carefully cleaning tartar and plaque away from your cat's teeth, both above and below the gum line.

For more information, contact a local cat dentist today.