Taking Care of Your Cat's Dental Care 101
Aug 17, 2021
There are more than 38 million households in America with cats. Cat owners love the companionship of the sweet little kitty cats. With only having to make about one trip to the vet a year, the ease of taking care of a cat is nice, too. One thing some people don’t realize is that you do need to remember to keep your pet cat’s teeth clean. Just like humans, cats need good oral hygiene to help keep the rest of their body healthy.
To keep your cat’s teeth clean it’s important to have lots of patience, willingness to practice your routine, a good pet toothbrush, and a cat-friendly toothpaste. Ideally, you get to a point where you brush your cat’s teeth every day, but brushing three times a week is a great goal to keep those pesky particles from causing major problems down the road.
CHEW ON THIS
You may have tried giving your cat dental chews or bones to ‘clean’ their teeth. Shortly after you may have realized it’s not getting the job done. Just like our own teeth, they have many sides and places for bacteria to hide. It takes a little work to gently brush off those food particles.
Having the right tools makes the job easier. A toothbrush designed for your pet makes for a safe, gentle brushing they need. The Lush & Plush Soft Pet Toothbrush by RADIUS® has a non-slip grip to help you control your grip while brushing and a small, oval, cornerless head so it’s gentle in your pet’s mouth. It’s also BPA-free, and we can all agree we want to keep those chemicals away from our little snuggle bugs. Plus, right in line with the RADIUS® commitment to a reduced carbon footprint, the Lush & Plush is landfill biodegradable.
It’s critically important to know if the toothpaste you use for your cat is safe. Many toothpastes are NOT okay for cats because of the fluoride and xylitol. Avoid human toothpaste. We weirdly may share some things with our cats, but toothpaste is not one of those things. If cats swallow even a small amount of xylitol, which is toxic to them, it could cause hypoglycemia and liver failure.
The type of food you give your cat can help with keeping their teeth clean also. Hill’s Dental Care food, for example, is a uniquely, larger-shaped kibble to help break down and reduce plaque.
PRACTICE MAKES PURFECT
Once you have the right products for your feline friends, introduce their new brushing routine slowly. Don’t expect a full brushing experience on the first try. In fact, you may simply practice putting a dab of toothpaste on your finger and let them get used to having your hands near or in their mouth.
That’s a big first step. Then, as they are comfortable with having the toothbrush in their mouth, start small and brush for a few seconds and gradually work up to a nice, whole-mouth session.
What happens if you skip this script? Plaque on your cat’s tooth can harden into tartar within a few days, and that can be the first step to health problems. Your cat may have developed an abscess if you see signs like a swollen face, a round visible bump in their mouth, drooling, nose bleeds, weight loss, or loss of appetite.
Keep those teeth clean so you can enjoy the unconditional love and companionship of your kitty. They should be a relaxing part of your life, so rest easy knowing a little practice and the right products can do the trick to keep your cat healthy and happy.