Cat Dental Care

Cat Dental Care

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  1. cat dental careDental care for your cat is essential to ensure the longevity of your feline companion. While you might not think that dental care is vital since cats in the wild don’t have access to dental care, keep in mind that the lifespan of an outdoor cat is less than 10 years, while an indoor cat can live anywhere from 15 to 30 years, depending on the cat species. This longer lifespan can mean more health issues, especially as the teeth and gums wear out over time from tartar buildup and mouth injuries. Gum disease can create toxins that can lead to the early death of your feline companion.

    How Frequently Do I Need to Have My Cat’s Teeth Cleaned?

    Like humans, cats need annual dental cleanings and check-ups. The first few years your cat won’t need as much dental care, but if you begin to see red in the gums, it’s time for a teeth cleaning or even a change in diet. After about age 5 or 6, cats teeth begin to wear and might begin needing annual cleaning. You can use oral rinses to prolong the health of your cats teeth.

    Some cats can get bad teeth and gums depending on how they chew their food, but a combination of dry food with occasional wet food in general is a good option for healthy teeth. Many veterinarians will recommend wet food primarily since it is a more natural state for your cats to consume food.

    If you do not care for your cat’s teeth, it can mean more teeth extractions needed for your cat, which can be costly for you but also frustrating for your pet.

    Health Concerns with Teeth Cleaning

    Since most cats will not sit by and quietly let a veterinarian clean their teeth, you will need to have your cat given anesthesia when the cleaning is administered. This can be problematic and risky for older cats age 15 and over since anesthesia can have more adverse effects on cats as they age. The alternatives to anesthesia for older cats can be less costly and ensure your pet has healthier teeth and gums, without the risks of using anesthesia.

    Tips for Cat Dental Care

    Use a mix of dry food with occasional wet food. If your cat has a habit of chewing the dry food a lot more (most cats swallow food whole), consider using more wet than dry food.

    • Oral rinses made for pets can be useful after feeding time.
    • Use tartar control treats.
    • After age 5, have your cat’s teeth checked and cleaned annually.
    • Avoid giving animals human food, especially processed human foods.

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