A lot of people tend to ignore their pet’s dental health because they believe pets do not require the same level of care as us when it comes to their teeth, and that is a really harmful misconception that can cause a lot of damage to your pet, either dog or cat, in the long term run.
So in this article, I’m going to talk about one of the alternatives pet owners come with when it comes to helping their cats have better dental health: Dental treats.
If you are interested in purchasing one after reading this article, you can click here for more detailed information about many different types of dental treats, so you can pick the one that fits you the most.
Common Cat Dental Health Complications
Animal teeth work pretty similarly to ours. They need it to eat and use it on a daily basis to consume their food, regardless of whether the food is soft or rough. With that said, it is well known that animal teeth tend to be much more resistant because of the nature of their diets and their needs to often chew raw meat and bones.
Cats are a carnivore, so their jaws are very strong and a single tooth found in their jaws can be very sharp and resistant, but the thing about common dental health complications is that they happen because they have been ignored for too long. Generally, if you take your cat to a Veterinarian regularly, they might check the teeth also, along with the complete pet health checkup. There you may not have to worry about dental problems of your cat, but if you are in doubt, you can talk to your vet about this.
Moreover, it’s not a matter of animals having resistant teeth, is a matter of ignoring something harmful to them for too long. Even the strongest wall can be brought down eventually by a harmless, regular rain. So, it would be a good idea to prevent the problem from getting worse.
How do dental problems begin? Well, there’s something called plaque, and it is the main source of all dental problems, cats included, and it often evolves into many more complicated problems that will keep on escalating and aggravating if ignored.
Plaque: The Source of All Evil
Plaque is, simply explain, the accumulation of food and bacteria, and is something that affects all living beings that consume food through their mouth and chew their food. Ideally, and the reason why humans brush their teeth on a daily basis, is to get rid of this accumulation of residue.
If left alone for too much time, it will be the source of many different problems related to you and your cat’s dental health and can affect tooth and gums at the same time.
Tartar, a Solidified Plaque
If plaque remains in a tooth for too much time, it’ll start to solidify over time because of the minerals found in saliva and food, and it’ll then become tartar, a solidified form of plaque that gets attached to a tooth.
This attachment of plaque is so strong that, after some time, won’t be able to be removed by normal methods. For humans, it is very normal to visit a dental expert to have those removed. The same case might happen for cats, so you should absolutely avoid it if possible.
Normally, tartar won’t be much of a problem, but if ignored for too much time, it’ll then cause the next dental health complication.
Gingivitis, When Tartar Gets Too Strong
Tartar has a very peculiar characteristic when they are left alone, and that is digging up the gum tissue and what is below it. When the gums are damaged, they turn red and get inflamed, and this condition is known as gingivitis.
When tartar has dug deep enough, the plaque, food, and bacteria can infect the interior of the gum, causing further damage. Depending on the degree of the infection, it might cause even further damage.
Periodontitis, the Beginning of the Decay
Plaque bacteria tend to become stronger and stronger when ignored, and there’s a point where it has dug up inside the gum to the point of establishing itself.
When this happens, the next state is known as Periodontitis and is the process in where the bacteria start to release harmful toxins that further damage the tissue of the gum, which then causes a reaction in the immune system that ends up getting rid of bacteria but causing a lot of damage to the gum and bone tissue of the mouth.
Tooth Decay and Loss of Teeth
Here’s when problems are a little complicated, especially when we talk about cats and the lack of special treatments regarding the loss of teeth in animals. Still, on most occasions, there are viable solutions.
Once the Periodontitis and Gingivitis process has become much present and the bacteria have fairly established itself, there’s a chance that it consumes enough gum tissue to reach the tooth’s roots, which will tend to begin to erode until the root has been dealt with.
At this point, the cat’s tooth is in a situation where it’ll cause pain when used, and your cat will suffer from severe pain as well as immune system reactions that might lead to fever.
Believe it or not, when the problem has reached this point, there’s even a chance of damaging the organs of your cat, considering how it can even damage the nervous system and the brain tissue at some point because of the connections inside their body. Just so you know, humans can also suffer from this problem.
Constant Dental Care and Dental Treats
Pet dental care mirrors the significance it holds in human health. Ideally, you’d aim to clean your cat’s teeth every day, but even doing it twice a week can suffice. Additionally, it’s essential to address any dental issues your cat might have to safeguard their teeth from decay. And when it comes to the cost of treatment, fret not if you’ve invested in a robust pet insurance plan like Figo’s. This insurance plan from Figo offers up to 100% reimbursement on vet fees, potentially sparing you from bearing the entire cost of your cat’s dental care.
Besides the dental treatment, consider incorporating dental treats into your cat’s routine. These treats can play a crucial role in reducing plaque buildup and promoting healthy gums, ultimately bolstering your cat’s defenses against tooth decay and the necessity for dental treatments.
How do they work? Well, the science is simple. Dental treats work like brushes, made food. The way animals consume them is by bitting them in a way that brushes their teeth while they do it. That is why they are often double-layered, having a rough layer on the outside and a softer layer on the inside, so once the cat breaks the outer layer, it’ll keep trying on chewing the same spot to consume the treat while the treat brushes the tooth.
It is also well known that the treat contains compounds that are spread on the mouth when consumed that are able to help the cat deal with the bacteria and once consumed, it can also improve the immune system.
Ideally, you should still engage in cleaning your cat’s mouth on a weekly basis, but by using dental treats, you make sure that dental care is much more effective, and you can engage on a one-per-week dental care plan.