Have you ever had dental issues? If so, you know that they can be not only very painful, but also quite debilitating. Not being able to chew properly can have a severe impact on your comfort and quality of life! This is true for cats just as much as it is for people. However, Fluffy can’t tell you if she has a toothache, and she definitely can’t make herself an appointment. It’s important to pay attention to your feline pal’s oral health, and watch for signs of trouble. A local Brantford, ON vet offers some insight on this below.
Kitties can develop many of the same dental problems as people do, but they are also prone to a few that aren’t typically seen in humans. The most common feline dental issues are gingivitis; periodontitis, or gum disease; and tooth resorption. Cats are also susceptible to stomatitis, which is an extremely painful infection; abscesses; misalignments; and/or teeth that have been cracked or broken.
Cats often try to be secretive about letting on that they don’t feel well. However, there are some clear signs to watch for. Poor grooming is often a key one. (Note: senior cats can be an exception here. Older kitties often have trouble grooming themselves, and can sometimes look a bit unkempt.) Other red flags include drooling, dribbling food, eating more slowly, chewing on one side of the mouth, withdrawal, uncharacteristic crankiness, lethargy, tartar buildup, bleeding gums, swelling, visible lesions or abscesses, and sensitivity. Fluffy may shy away from having her head or face touched, and she may not feel very playful. It’s worth noting that many of these things can be indicative of a variety of health issues. Contact your vet right away if you notice any of these things.
The best way to keep up with your kitty’s dental care? Brush her teeth. We know, this sounds like a good way to end up in the ER. It’s definitely not something you should force. However, if you take time to train Fluffy, and get your feline buddy to think of having her teeth cleaned as being pampered, it may be easier than you think. If your furry pal just isn’t having it, ask your vet about using other dental products, such as oral rinses or dental flakes.
As your local Brantford, ON animal hospital, we are dedicated to providing top-notch veterinary care. Please feel free to contact us for all of your cat’s veterinary care needs.