How To Successfully Brush Your Cats Teeth
Just as we brush our teeth everyday to ensure we prevent dental disease, your cat needs the same hygiene! Regular brushing of your cat’s teeth helps prevent periodontal disease. The buildup of plaque will works its way under the gum line, and the bacteria within the plaque will inflame the gums and eventually lead to the loss of the supportive tissue and bone surrounding the tooth, also known as periodontitis. As the disease progresses, the infection sets into the teeth and leads to tooth loss.
Tooth loss is just the beginning problem for your cat. The tartar and plaque are forms of oral bacteria that can enter the bloodstream, and affect the heart, liver, and kidneys. The best ways to prevent tartar buildup, avoid dental disease, and lessen health risks is to regularly brush the teeth and also to have regular dentals from us!
Here are 7 guidelines on how to brush your cat’s teeth.
Come see us first!
By letting us do a dental exam first, we can check and make sure that she/he does not have a painful tooth or inflamed gingiva. We can address any big dental issues first.
Toothbrushes come in all shapes and sizes but a finger brush is one of the easiest to work with. Then select pet-specific toothpaste in a flavor your cat will like, like chicken or fish.
Go slowly and familiarize your cat.
Before you brush your cat’s teeth, you need to get her use to having her face and mouth touched. Try touching the brush on the side of the face and along the upper lip.
Also put the toothpaste at the end of your index finger, and let her lick it off. Then put the toothpaste at the end of the toothbrush and let her lick it off the brush so she gets use to the brush. When she gets use to that, start cleaning her front teeth and then slowly work your way back into the back teeth.
By having a calm environment and using a soft voice to praise her will help.
Follow your cat’s cues.
Respect your cat’s space and stop at any signs of agitation. Forcing a cat only will make her not trust you in the future.
Give a reward.
For your cat to consider brushing her teeth a positive experience, associate it with an enjoyable reward, like playtime.
Plaque begins formation within eight hours and can quickly turn into tartar, so try to keep up on brushing the teeth.
With these steps you can successfully brush your cats teeth. If you have any questions, feel free to call us at 505-869-2627.