Cats Community
What's a good way to introduce a toothbrush to an adult cat?
About This Community:

This forum is for questions and support regarding your pet cats!

Font Size:
A
A
A
Background:
Blank
Blank
Blank
Blank Blank

What's a good way to introduce a toothbrush to an adult cat?

No one ever brushed the cat's teeth when she was a kitten, so she isn't used to anyone messing with her mouth.  She is good about cooperating with me when I give her her allergy medicine before I feed her.  She tries to pull away, but she is still really good about it.  She clearly understands I am only trying to help her, even if she doesn't like it.  Her vet said I need to do this.  I agree.  Kitty has tartar and bad breath.  She is approximately seven years old, too.
Related Discussions
8 Comments Post a Comment
Blank
1212795_tn?1266238517
for god sake !
i have 9 cats.. 7 persians nad 2 turkish and i never have done this for them !! and they are perfectly normal !
but still i am interested to know what's the answer to your question !
Blank
685623_tn?1283485207
Let's start with the basics...

Food, saliva, immune cells, and bacteria all work together and form the matrix that we know as plaque.  If not disrupted on the tooth's surface (by brushing or some sort of mechanical removal) plaque will eventually organize and form calculus (tartar).  The tartar actually helps to protect the bacteria that form more plaque and will work their way under the gum line and eventually work on weakening the bone that holds the teeth in place and even the jaw bone itself in severe cases.

It takes plaque about 48-72 hours to organize and minerlize into tartar, so that's why veterinarians recommend daily brushing of your pet's teeth.  Other things you can do include using a dental type of diet for your pet, using approved treats (like Greenies for Cats) or using water additives and/or sealants to help protect the teeth.

Some pets (through genetics or for yet unknown reasons) seem to produce plaque more slowly and will not develop dental disease as quickly.  Others seem to be prone to problems (example, many schnauzers have terrible dental disease).

In either event, the very first step is to have your cat's teeth professionally cleaned.  Your veterinarian can remove the tarter, clean under the gumline and then polish the teeth in order to help minimize the attachment points for the plaque bacteria.  Also, many veterinarian use a barrier sealant to actually help repel the bacteria.

As far as at home care, you can try to start with a small gauze square wrapped around your finger and dipped in something tasty, like tuna juice.  Allow your kitty to lick this and slowly work your finger along the cheek surfaces of her teeth.  It really only takes a minute or two to disrupt the plaque, so you don't need to spend a long time and stress her out.  After a week or so of using your finger with gauze, you can try a small toothbrush (soft bristles only) or a finger brush available at your veterinarian.  Again, use the tuna juice as enticement.  After another week or so, you can try graduating to a pet dentifrice (never use human toothpaste).

If your veterinarian has applied the barrier sealant after her cleaning, you can follow up with the sealant once weekly at home.

I hope this helps...I think it's great that you are taking such an interest in your pet's health.   More than 85% of all dogs and cats have some sort of dental disease.  What's worse is that 42% of cats that have normal looking mouths actually have dental disease that you can't see under the gumline.
Blank
681148_tn?1285160820
Ah, now this would make buying a can of chicken broth worthwhile.  I don't keep that stuff in the house, but I could do it for the cat.
Blank
541150_tn?1306037443
So..how is the task of brushing kitty's teeth going so far?
Blank
681148_tn?1285160820
I still need to get some supplies.  Due to my own health issues, I haven't been able to get to the store to get them.  I will as soon as I am physically able.  I'm in the middle of a major fibro flare.
Blank
740516_tn?1360946086
Hey ,this  really interest me - keep posting!
In fact I posted about once, Loreena was in the learning process when she got pregnant and I had to postpone the stuff.
She was accepting the brush but hated that cheap feline paste mint flavour.
Since the meat flavour one is big and a lot expensive I couldnt try that yet.
I brush kittens ones with a wet Qtip when I have time, for they get used to

Dr Thomas, is it ok using bicarbonate or something like that?
For Loreena,I mean,not for the kids...
Blank
681148_tn?1285160820
The kitty loves the C.E.T. chicken flavored toothpaste.  The only trick I need to figure out how to get her to get her to give me a chance to get those back teeth a little bit better.  Silly thing goes nuts for that toothpaste and attacks the fingertip toothbrush like there is no tomorrow.  She is definitely not getting stressed out over getting her teeth brushed. LOL  She is having fun with it.
Blank
685623_tn?1283485207
I am not sure how bicarbonate would affect a cat...I would probably avoid it, especially if it becomes really foamy.

Glad to hear that the cat is liking the toothpaste.   Don't worry terribly about being perfect on the back teeth...the action of her saliva and her tongue will help to cover those areas.
Blank
Post a Comment
To
MedHelp Health Answers
Recent Activity
Avatar_f_tn
Blank
dontworry_behappy1 commented on photo
1 hr ago
Avatar_f_tn
Blank
dontworry_behappy1 commented on photo
1 hr ago
1755089_tn?1376057155
Blank
drewlevas uploaded new photos
2 hrs ago
Top Cats Answerers
587315_tn?1333556383
Blank
zodiacqueen
VA
874521_tn?1375890587
Blank
opus88
Canada..., SK
7052683_tn?1392942395
Blank
CML2014
highland beach, FL
506791_tn?1350343103
Blank
Piparskeggr
Saint Mary's County, MD
242912_tn?1402547092
Blank
Jade59
CA
134578_tn?1404951303
Blank
AnnieBrooke
OR
Cats Community Resources
RSS Expert Activity
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
Control Emotional Eating with this ...
Sep 04 by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
Emotional Eating Control: How to St...
Aug 28 by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank
233488_tn?1310696703
Blank
New Cannabis Article from NORTH Mag...
Jul 20 by John C Hagan III, MD, FACS, FAAOBlank
Top Cats Answerers
587315_tn?1333556383
Blank
zodiacqueen
VA
874521_tn?1375890587
Blank
opus88
Canada..., SK
7052683_tn?1392942395
Blank
CML2014
highland beach, FL
506791_tn?1350343103
Blank
Piparskeggr
Saint Mary's County, MD
242912_tn?1402547092
Blank
Jade59
CA
134578_tn?1404951303
Blank
AnnieBrooke
OR