Tag Archives: cat teeth cleaning

How Do You Brush a Cat’s Teeth?

The Best Ways To Care For Your Feline’s Adult Cat Teeth

How Many Teeth Do Domestic Cats Have?

Cats have 30 adult teeth and 26 baby teeth. Regular brushing at home combined with dental cleanings at the vet help to reduce the presence of plaque and tartar, both which kickstart inflammation and potential diseases. So how can you tell when your cat needs a good clean? 

As gross as it may seem, the smell of your cat’s breath is either a good indication of proper oral hygiene or prospective disease. Feline halitosis (as bad breath is scientifically referred to) can be caused by many different things. Most common is periodontal disease, a build-up of plaque that irritates the gums and can lead to infection. If plaque is not removed, it can harden into tartar, serving as a formidable base on which more plaque builds up. 

Is Bad Breath an Indication of a Bigger Problem? 

Although bad breath in cats doesn’t always mean something’s awry, bad breath can sometimes serve as a warning symptom for a much more significant health problem. If the root of the (tooth) problem is caused by oral cancers, this can severely impact both the comfort and life span of your cat.  

The smell of your cat’s breath can also predict conditions that extend beyond the surface of the mouth. A urine or ammonia smell coming from your cat’s mouth may signal kidney disease which requires professional care, so it’s best to take your cat into your local veterinary clinic as soon as possible.

Brushing Habits

So, how often should you brush your cat’s teeth? Ideally, to prevent decay and infection a cat’s teeth should be brushed just as often as human teeth. We understand that daily brushing can seem unattainable and unrealistic – especially if you want to avoid invading your cat’s personal space and risking their wrath every night before bed! So, as a supplement to regular brushing, you can consider dental cleansing treats; just be sure to discuss these with your veterinarian to ensure they are an acceptable part of your pet’s individual diet.  

Preventative Care

During a cat’s annual health check-up, veterinarians will check your pet’s teeth and gums for signs of disease. Looking at their gums for redness, yellow tinting, swelling, bleeding, and inflammation can help your veterinarian rule out gingivitis, liver disease, and poor oral care. Many domestic cats don’t get regular veterinary care until they are injured, or they show definite signs of being sick, so be sure to help keep your pet in good health with once-a-year wellness exams. Remember, your pet can’t tell you their teeth hurt, and cats are notorious for hiding pain. Don’t wait until your pet is clearly in pain or distress before bringing them in!

Your Pet Probably Has Dental Disease

Pet dental disease is the most common and preventable health condition for pets. They start out with beautiful, shiny white teeth. But by age three, nearly 80 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats have some form of dental disease. This can lead to more severe health problems.

Pets need dental care just like people. Without regular cleanings, plaque begins to build up on the teeth. Plaque is a nasty, sticky film caused by bacteria in the mouth. As plaque forms on the teeth, it irritates the gum tissue, causing red or swollen gums. Eventually, minerals in the saliva will harden the plaque into tartar.

Bacteria and plaque build-up on your pet’s teeth that isn’t removed through at-home brushings will mean bad breath and tartar are definitely in your pet’s future. Regular dental cleanings by veterinary professionals can reduce your pet’s risk for developing gingivitis, a painful inflammation of the gums, periodontal disease, and avoid tooth loss. Pets with periodontal disease are at risk for developing heart, liver or kidney disease .

if your pet has bad breath, red or swollen gums, missing, loose or cracked teeth or has experienced a recent change in appetite or trouble eating, it’s time for a trip to AZPetVet.

Find an AZPetVet location near you.

The Importance of Dental Health

Virtually no one likes going to the dentist…but we all know it’s important! Dental care for humans and animals alike is something that should never be ignored. Proper dental hygiene is a critical part of keeping your pet healthy and happy, helping to avoid potentially life-threatening issues that come with dental disease. Want to know just a bit more? Dr. Tressa MacLennan from our Scottsdale location did a quick segment with a brief overview! Check it out:

Stop Procrastinating – Bring Your Cat to the Vet Day

Cat vet visitAccording to CatFriendly.com, 83 percent of cats make a visit to the vet during their first year. We believe 100 percent is a goal worth working for, however, there’s a problem much bigger than that 17 percent gap.

More than 50 percent of the kitties that got those important checkups and vaccinations before age one won’t see a vet again until they’re sick or in pain. Fifty percent.

Why Postponing the Vet Visit is a BAD Idea

Regular Checkups Make Purr-fect Sense and Help Lower the Lifetime Cost of Care

Domesticated cats also tend to be indoor cats, so their potential exposure to diseases carried by other animals or pests is lower than that of an outdoor or feral cat. This decreased risk somehow translates into fewer vet visits. This is NOT the way to go about keeping pets healthy.

Here’s why: Cats are notorious for hiding when they’re not feeling well or in pain. In fact, they’ve practically perfected the art of hiding potentially harmful symptoms until they can’t any longer.

Regular wellness checkups can help your vet detect health changes in your cat. Early detection means problems can be treated BEFORE they become chronic health conditions that may require potentially expensive treatment.

Benefits of Routine Wellness Checks for Cats

So consider this your reminder: today is National BRING YOUR CAT TO THE VET DAY. While you’re thinking about it, call your vet and book the appointment. You’ll be glad you did.

Find an AZPetVet location

 

National Cat Health Month

National Cat Health MonthLet’s talk about cats, shall we? Going by poll numbers,“Team Cat” is clearly ahead in the hearts of American pet owners: approximately 86 million of America’s pets are cats versus an estimated 78 million dogs.

So when it come to healthcare, why do so many cats fall so far behind? Quite simply, too many pet owners believe their cat doesn’t need routine wellness check-ups. They couldn’t be more wrong. Cats need to visit the vet at least once per year, but ideally they should be seen every six months. Since February is National Cat Health Month, we’re going to look at six big reasons why you need to make an appointment for your kitty ASAP!

  1. Teeth cleaning & dental care (Psst – it’s also Pet Dental Health Month so you’ll save $50!)
  2. Spaying & Neutering – cats are prolific breeders, so it’s a must
  3. Changes in a cat’s health can happen quickly, so preventive care is important
  4. Sick cats often show no signs of being ill – they hide symptoms and pain well
  5. Early diagnosis of health problems equals early intervention/better outcome
  6. Regular vaccinations are vital to protecting your pet from diseases

Don’t wait for veterinary visits – make regular head to toe exams for your cat part of your routine. While you might not know what to look for, you’re far more likely to pick up on any changes in your pet’s health, and as a bonus it helps your pet get used to being handled. Your vet and vet techs will thank you!

So now that you see the importance of preventive care for your furry feline friends, when is the last time your cat got a health check up? If the answer isn’t within the last six months, then it’s time to give us a call. Find your nearest AZPetVet animal hospital here.