How can I tell if my cat has toothache?

Dental problems in cats

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Dental problems and infections are very common in cats – especially as they get older, and, knowing what toothache feels like, it’s fair to say it’s probably painful for our feline friends, too. Once any problems within your cat’s mouth have been diagnosed and treated, you may be surprised by how much happier the cat seems. As with anything, prevention is better than cure, so implementing a good dental routine with your cat is very important.

Symptoms to look out for…

Difficulty eating or lack of interest in food should always ring alarm bells, but other warning signs are:

As well as regular checks of the teeth and mouth, your cat can be trained to tolerate having his or her teeth cleaned – though this may not be easy unless started at the kitten stage. Begin simply by slowly rubbing your cat’s teeth, before adding the toothpaste and eventually introducing a soft brush. Special cat toothpaste and soft brushes specifically for cats are readily available. As with humans, this is the best way of removing food or plaque from the teeth and thus avoiding many cat dental problems before they even begin.

Other sensible measures to take to maximise your cat’s dental health include:

Common dental problems in cats…

There are many different conditions which can cause pain, discomfort and infections in the cat’s mouth. Some may seem trivial at first but left untreated, can soon become serious or have a knock-on effect on your cat’s overall health:

Make good oral hygiene and dental care as much a part of your cat’s routine as it is your own, and ensure rapid treatment should any problems occur. Keep up to date with vet check-ups and vaccination reviews and discuss any concerns with your vet. A happy mouth can mean a happy cat for much, much longer – and that’s all most cat owners want for their pet – don’t you?

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