Cat’s don’t generally have wonderful breath, but what do you do when it’s unbearable?
Animal Wellness Magazine comes to the rescue again with these excellent tips on feline dental care.
Periodontal disease can be the culprit when it comes to bad pet breath.
Ann Brightman notes that, “bad breath is one of the main signs that a cat’s teeth and gums aren’t in the best of shape. If your cat’s breath is foul, take a look in her mouth. If you see brownish teeth or reddened gums, it’s time for a visit to the vet.
Other signs of periodontal issues are difficulty eating, dropping food or failing to chew it properly, drooling or pawing at the mouth. Any or all of these clues mean your cat is in discomfort and needs attention, even if she otherwise seems fine. Remember that cats are good at hiding pain.
Ignoring the symptoms of periodontal disease can lead to more serious problems down the road, such as painful abscesses and tooth loss. And since the harmful bacteria in a diseased mouth can spread to other parts of the body via the blood, her heart, kidneys and other organs may eventually be affected. In other words, dental disease that is left untreated may ultimately shorten your cat’s life.”
Some tips from Brightman include:
1. If your cat has existing signs of dental disease, take her to the vet to have her teeth professionally cleaned.
2. Look at your cat’s diet. If she’s eating poor quality food, make it a priority to switch her to healthier fare.
3. Toss the commercial cat treats, especially the semi-moist ones that are full of artificial colors and other chemicals.
4. See if you can brush your cat’s teeth. Not all kitties will allow this, but if you have a kitten or young cat, make an effort to get her accustomed to having her mouth handled on a regular basis.
5. If your cat won’t accept brushing (and don’t force it if she won’t), check out the variety of brushless dental products on the market.
And finally, “preventing or reducing dental problems in your cat isn’t that challenging. The younger your kitty is when you start, the better – but cats of any age can benefit. Remember…a pain-free mouth means better overall health and a happier, more contented kitty.”