A cat-friendly practice, as certified by the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP), Elmhurst Animal Care Center offers preventive and treatment services that meet the physical and emotional needs of cats and kittens. As part of its preventive care practice, Elmhurst Animal Care Center helps owners maintain their cats’ dental health.
According to data from the American Veterinary Dental Society, approximately 70 percent of cats show signs of dental problems by the time they turn 3 years old. This makes dental disease the most commonly diagnosed health problem in cats, and it is one that can cause a cat to be in severe and constant pain. Fortunately, owners can take steps to prevent it through regular veterinary exams and at-home dental care.
The ideal hygiene routine involves regular tooth brushing, but many cats will need to acclimate slowly to the experience. Experts suggest that owners start by gently touching the cat’s mouth and lifting its lips while the cat is in a happy and relaxed state. Once the cat is used to this, the owner can work up to either brushing with a veterinary toothbrush and toothpaste or wiping the cat’s teeth with a special dental wipe.
Dental rinses may be effective if a cat will not submit to tooth brushing, and dental toys or treats can help. An experienced feline veterinarian can recommend a particular brand. Meanwhile, the owner should look out for signs of oral discomfort, such as drooling, bad breath, or a reluctance to eat.