Posts Tagged ‘cat gum disease’

Brushing a Dog’s (or Cat’s) Teeth

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

brush dog's teeth

Does your dog have bad breath? Well, maybe you are not employing the use of proper oral hygiene. After all, us humans need to maintain a level of oral care so that we don’t have halitosis. Also, just like people, dogs and cats can get gum disease–and if a dog or cat’s gums are infected and abscessed, bacteria can enter the bloodstream, causing liver, kidney, and even heart malfunctions. So, what’s a good way to brush your best friend’s teeth?

Here are some tips for brushing your pet’s teeth:

#1 Start off slowly. Make sure to use a toothpaste formula that is specifically made for animals, since human toothpaste can give stomach upsets to animals. Have your pet lick the paste off of your finger, and you might need to try a few different flavors to find one that your pet likes.

#2 Once you can get toothpaste into the animal’s mouth, use a slight amount on your finger and run it across the dog or cat’s teeth. This might even take several days to get your pet to do this agreeably. Once your pet is fine with you doing this to its teeth, use a toothbrush (made for pets) and make small circles on the gum line. Don’t brush too hard!

#3 Be sure to cheer on your pet and express approval during this process. Afterward, you could also give your pet a treat, playtime, a walk, etc., so it will think of brushing as a positive moment.

#4 In order to practice proper oral hygiene with your pet, try to brush your pet’s teeth every day.

Here are some warning signs to look for in your pet’s mouth:

  1. Yellow or brown tartar, especially where the teeth and gums meet
  2. Red, swollen, bleeding, inflamed, tender, and/or receding gums
  3. Chronic halitosis
  4. Teeth that are chipped/broken
  5. Tooth resorption (especially common in cats)- a very painful condition in which the tooth dissolves
  6. A change in the animal’s diet, chewing habits and appetite can signify depression (along with pawing at the face/mouth).

Also, don’t forget to try this oral rinse for dogs and cats that helps prevent plaque and tartar buildup.  Be sure to practice good oral hygiene with your pet, so that the both of you can have great smiles!

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Bad Breath is a Symptom of Gum Disease in Dogs and Cats

Friday, February 19th, 2010

bad breath in pets

Even though February is National Pet Dental Health Month, proper oral hygiene for pets should be practiced year-round. Bad breath in your pet can be a symptom of an oral health dilemma. Taking your dog or cat to the veterinarian is one of the most important things that you can do to prevent and treat periodontal (gum) disease in your pet. According to sources, an estimated 68% of cats and 78% of dogs that are 3 years of age and older have a form of oral disease.

In recognition of National Pet Dental Health Month, more information is being released for pet owners and vets to help improve or maintain a good level of oral hygiene for their animals. It reminds us of the old saying, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” All breeds of these animals are susceptible to developing periodontal disease. Studies show that the top breeds of dogs that are predisposed to getting gum disease are the Toy Poodle, Yorkshire Terrier, Maltese, Pomeranian, Shetland Sheepdog, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Papillion, Standard Poodle, Dachshund and Havanese. The disease is most prominent in the following types of cats: the Himalayan, Siamese, and Persian.

Each year that your pet is alive, the risks of developing the disease actually increase 20%. Vets everywhere should insist that pet owners should treat the disease if it is diagnosed, so that it does not become serious.  Let’s not forget that TheraBreath has an excellent oral health formula specifically made for dogs and cats. Stop bad breath in dogs and cats today!

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Diagnose and Treat Your Cat’s Halitosis

Friday, May 1st, 2009

cat bad breath

Halitosis coming from your cat’s mouth can be unpleasant for multiple reasons. Not only is the smell unwelcoming, but it can also signify various diseases. Cat owners can buy many different products, like cat toothbrushes, toothpastes, treats and drops that help with cat breath, tartar, and other cat dental issues.

There are many underlying diseases that could be causing the smelly odor from your cat’s mouth:

  • Gingivitis, inflammation of the gums
  • Abscessed tooth/teeth
  • Bone/hairball stuck in mouth
  • Oral ulceration
  • Foreign bodies in mouth, (i.e. grass awns, plant material)
  • Tumors in mouth (oral neoplasia)
  • Lung diseases (i.e. cancer)
  • Kidney disease
  • Periodontal disease, inflammation of the tissue that surrounds the teeth

Warning signs to Look Out For:

  • Oral pain/discharge (especially if there is blood)
  • Drooling
  • Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)
  • Difficulty eating
  • Depression

Treating Your Cat:

If you feel your cat has any of these problems, the best bet is to take it to a vet for a professional opinion. Veterinary care may involve various diagnostic tests to reveal the cause of the bad breath, which include:

  • Thorough medical history and physical examination
  • Complete oral exam (may require brief anesthetic)
  • Full-mouth X-rays with dental machine
  • Periodontal probing to identify possible periodontal diseases

Home Treatment:

Home treatments are dependent on what specific problem the cat has. Here are some prevention mechanisms you can take to help your cat’s foul-smelling breath:

  • Daily cat teeth brushing (look for special brushes/pastes available from a vet)
  • Spraying .12% chlorhexidine (prescribed from a vet) into your cat’s mouth once daily for one to two weeks.
  • Follow special dietary considerations. Get input from your vet on what works the best for your cat.
  • Diagnosis by a vet if the halitosis persists.

Source: Dr. Debra Primovic

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