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Why does my cat's breath smell so bad?

Why does my cat's breath smell so bad?

If you're a cat parent, you probably know that cats like to be close to you, especially in the morning when you wake up to their bad breath. While dental issues are a common cause of bad breath in cats, there could be other reasons too. Our vets in Zeeland will explain some of these causes and provide tips on how to help treat the smelly breath.

Reasons Why Your Cat Has Bad Breath

Bad breath is not just a problem for dogs; it can also affect cats. There are various reasons why a cat's breath may smell bad, including poor oral hygiene, dental problems, or other health issues. Therefore, it's essential to take your cat to the veterinarian for a dental checkup to determine the root cause of their bad breath.

Oral Hygiene & Dental Disease in Cats

Although we try our best to care for our beloved cats, we often forget about their oral hygiene. Sadly, most cats will have dental problems by the time they turn three years old.

When cats eat, food particles and bacteria can stick to their teeth and cause various dental issues. If this bacteria isn't removed daily, it can harden into tartar, which can cause gum recession, leading to teeth falling out, and even more severe problems like heart and kidney disease.

Some signs of dental issues in cats include:

  • Bleeding gums
  • Bad breath
  • Redness of the mouth and gums
  • Behavioral changes
  • Inability to eat or lack of appetite

If you notice any of these symptoms or changes in your cat's behavior or appetite, you should take them to a veterinarian for an oral examination. Treatment options may include dental cleanings, tooth extractions, antibiotics, and dietary changes.

Other Conditions That May Cause Your Cat's Bad Breath

While dental problems are the most common cause of bad breath in cats, other serious health conditions can also cause this issue. These conditions can have similar symptoms to dental problems, so it's important to take your cat to the vet for an examination as soon as possible.

Some examples of conditions that can cause bad breath in cats include:

  • Ulcers and sores
  • Kidney disease
  • Abscess or infection
  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Teething
  • Diabetes
  • Liver disease
  • Diet 
  • Infections
  • Cancer

Because there are so many potential causes, it's always best to bring your cat to the vet if they have bad breath, especially if it lasts for a long time. 

How To Get Rid of Cat's Bad Breath

If your cat has bad breath, you should try to figure out what is causing it. You can start by brushing your cat's teeth regularly with a special toothbrush or even your finger until your cat gets used to it.

Aim to brush at least twice a week to prevent the buildup of plaque and tartar. Additionally, take your cat to the vet for a dental checkup and cleaning once a year to help detect any potential dental problems early.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Are you concerned that your cat's bad breath may be linked to oral health or systemic conditions? Book an oral examination appointment for your cat today at Zeeland Veterinary Service.

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Zeeland Veterinary Service is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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