Dental care is very important in all small animals and cat's teeth require regular dental care to prevent the build-up of plaque.
How to keep your cats teeth clean?
Most cats will require some form of dental treatment during their lifetime. There are lots of preventative products available that, if used regular and correctly, should help reduce the amount of dental work your pet needs as he gets older. The best way to do this is similar to us by brushing your cats’ teeth regularly with special flavoured toothpaste that can be swallowed, dry food or even a special prescription diet. If the plaque is left untreated, this will become mineralised (tartar and calculus), leading to gum inflammation and infection, receding gums and tooth loss.
How to brush your cat’s teeth?
Brushing your cats’ teeth can be quite tricky, as some cats may not allow you near their mouth. But if it is possible you should follow these steps -
- Start by using your finger to brush the side of your cats face by his mouth. Then progress to brushing the actual teeth, just using your finger. Once he is used to this start using a small amount of animal toothpaste on your finger and gently rub it along the teeth.
- Next progress to using an actual toothbrush you can use any toothbrush, but ones designed for veterinary use come in different shapes and sizes, which makes them a bit easier to use on cats.
- You should eventually aim to brush all the surfaces in about two minutes. The more gradual the process the easier it will be.
If this fails you can use teeth cleaning products to help break down the build-up of plaque such as, dentagen and Plaque off.
What are the signs of dental disease in cats?
- Smelly breath
- Bleeding Gums
- Mouth Pain
- Excessive dribbling
- Blood stained saliva
Try as we might some pets are prone to dental disease and will need to have dental treatment on their teeth. Sometimes it is not possible to see the full extent of the damage until the teeth are examined under a general anaesthetic. Tartar below the gums could cause painful inflammation (gingivitis) and infection that can track down to the roots causing abscesses.
Tartar/calculus will need to be removed by descaling and polishing all teeth and extracting any damaged teeth. At this stage follow up prevention is very important to keep plaque from reoccurring. We have state of arts dental equipment for descaling and extractions.
Regular check-ups with your vet can pick up on any problems early and assess the need for treatment. You can also book a free of charge appointment with our nurse for a dental check and for advice on how to keep your pet's teeth clean.