Dental health is often overlooked by pet owners. Kitties need strong and sharp teeth to do all of the things they love - hunting and catching - even if all they are catching are mouse toys and kibbles! Getting an annual check-up and cleaning with your vet will help to combat any potential dental health risks - potentially saving you big vet bills down the road, too!
Staying on top of your cat’s dental hygiene starts at home.
Here are our top five home care tips for feline dental care:
Good ol’ fashioned brushing: Brushing doesn’t have to be a chore. A small toothbrush or cotton swabs and cat-specific toothpaste are all you need. Be sure never to use toothpaste designed for people, as the ingredients can be unhealthy for your cat. Expect to get a little resistance at first. Start slowly by letting your cat smell the toothbrush and build up from there by doing 30-seconds at a time until your furry friend is comfortable with getting its teeth brushed.
Breath check: Take a sniff! Now, your cat’s breath will probably not smell like flowers, but it shouldn’t be offensive. If you take a sniff of your kitties breath and you smell a very terrible strong odour, he/she may either have a gum condition or a digestive issue. Both of these are potential problems you should get examined by your vet.
Peek inside: While you’re doing your breath check, take a good look inside the mouth of your cat. Indicators of dental health problems or risks that you should be looking for include: dark, red gums, swollen gums, ulcers, pus or loose teeth. Outside the mouth, keep your eye on any behaviour changes from your kitty (e.g. excessive pawing at the mouth area, difficulty chewing food and excessive drooling can all be signs of a dental health issue).
At any sign of gum inflammation, take your cat for a visit to the vet. If left untreated, gum disease can develop. Inflammation of the mouth can also be an indication of internal issues, like kidney disease.
Chewing: Chew toys are very important for indoor cats. It will satisfy your cat’s desire to chomp as well as help make teeth strong and healthy. Chewing on toys is good for your your kitty’s dental health; massaging the gums and helping fight tartar.
Diet: If your cat has trouble with its dental hygiene, we can recommend some great nutritional products for their individual needs.
Jump on our February promotion and book your FREE pet dental exam before the end of the month. If you decide to proceed with cleaning, you'll save 20% on professional, sedation-only pet dental cleaning this month too!
Book now by calling the clinic at 250-339-6555.
Yours in good health,
From the desk of Dr. Stacey Gastis
Sunrise Veterinary Clinic