Just like people, cats can contract infections due to bacteria on the teeth that gets embedded underneath the gums. Because of this, teeth cleaning is an important part of your cat's hygienic care that you will need to monitor. In most cases, your cat will have their teeth cleaned at their annual visit with their veterinarian. In the interim, you will want to do some cat teeth cleaning on your own to keep their mouth healthy. Here are some instructions you can use in cleaning your cat's teeth.
Start Off Slow
If you have never done a cleaning regimen on your cat's teeth in the past, they will most likely not be very pleased about having you probe around in their mouth suddenly. To get them used to the idea, use some sterile gauze pads to lightly rub against your cat's teeth. Gently pull up on the upper portion of your cat's mouth, around the whisker area, so the teeth are exposed. Rub the gauze over the teeth while speaking to your cat in a soothing tone. When they start fidgeting, let them go instead of forcing them to endure the rubbing longer than they wish. Do this once or twice a day so they get used to you looking into their mouth and touching their teeth.
Add Some Toothpaste
Pick up a feline toothpaste at your local pet store. Most cats will enjoy the taste of the paste, allowing you to rub it over their teeth with the gauze. Never use human toothpaste on a cat's teeth, as the ingredients can make them sick. Open your cat's mouth and put a small dab of the toothpaste on a piece of gauze which you will rub over the surface of the fronts of their teeth. Rub gently. Your cat will most likely try to eat the toothpaste, so use this to your advantage by rubbing some of the interior portions of the teeth with the gauze at this time.
If you do not clean the entire mouth, just clean untouched sections the next day. Speak softly to your cat and pet them right after the cleaning so they are rewarded for sitting still while you had done the work for them. Offering a treat after the procedure will also make the procedure tolerable, as they will soon figure out that they will have a morsel to eat when it is over.
See The Veterinarian
Make sure to take your cat to a veterinarian for routine annual checkups. At this time, the veterinarian will take a look at your cat's teeth and will scale off any tartar you may have missed during your cleanings. If tartar is extreme, they may recommend adding special food to their diet. The food has an abrasive coating on the pellets so tartar is scraped off the surface of the teeth when it is eaten. Your cat may also be prescribed with an additive you can put in its water, which will reduce bacteria in the mouth.
For more information, contact Gwynedd Veterinary Hospital or a similar location.