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How many here brush their cat's teeth?

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
my kitty has bad breath. He has no medical problems and I feed him a mix of Nutro Natural choice and Iams. Should I be brushing his teeth? Am interested to know how many of you do this? Thank you.
post #2 of 35
I brush all my kitties teeth! Some of my cats get really bad breath ! I heard somewhere that if a cat has fishy breath, it is a sign of an illness. The smell is probably from tartar or a gum disease. Check your kitties teeth and look for pale or dark gums and tartar. You may need to take him to the vet to have his teeth cleaned!
post #3 of 35
My two get a free range chicken neck each three or four times a week. Teeth are perfect!

post #4 of 35
Thread Starter 
is healthy as he was just at the vet for his neuter and a complete health check. How often do you brush your cat's teeth? Is there any cat toothpaste that is recommended or better? Thanks again.
post #5 of 35
The only products I know of, are ones I have seen at Petsmart or Petco. Though I no longer buy from Petco.

They have pet tooth whips



And they also have tooth paste, and tooth brushs. You shouldn't use human toothpaste, it's not healthy for them. Plus most CATS wont like the minty taste


A lot of people like the finger brushs, I just use a small childs toothbrush personally. The one that comes in the kit above is plunty small. Animal tooth paste is often flavored like Turkey, Chicken or Peanut Butter.

post #6 of 35
I tried to brush my cat's teeth, but gave up - he won't hold still and gets so upset that it's not worthwhile (plus I value my hands). He eats dry food every morning, so I hope that helps to prevent tartar.
post #7 of 35
I really tried, but it was tough on the both of us Now, I just take him to the vet once per year for a teeth cleening. Hopefully, having dry food out all day helps too.
post #8 of 35
I always have my animals teeth checked out any time we go to the vet for anything, just so that if they do see something I can catch it early and get it treated.

Though I have never had any teeth issues yet. As none of MY personal animals are that old.

There have been studies world wide showing that dry food helps with tartar in such a way that chewing a hard pretzle would benifit us compaired to munching on taffy (aka canned cat food.)
But there have been studies saying canned food is better for teeth, and some studies saying that neither one makes a difference!

I personally believe dry food works the best for teeth. Any cat I have ever taken care of, had significant breath and tartar increase when fed a mostly wet food diet (of any low or high quality) it didn't matter.

If your cat does eat wet food, there always many hard treats to offer them. Like the tarter control treats, the pieces are oven very big, the bigger the better, as the cat will have to crunch it with their teeth more, verse swallowing small treats whole, and gaining no benifit.

There is also dental treats for cats, one I like is called Greenies.
post #9 of 35
I brush my kitties teeth everyday, well I try to. Try using the brushes that fit over your finger, they work great for me.
post #10 of 35
A friend recently went to a seminar on dental health for cats. Each attendee was given a biscuit to eat. Then asked if their teeth felt clean. Everyone said "NO". The vet said now you know why dry food does not help - cats cannot chew like you do, the food gets caught between the teeth and decay is the obvious result. He supports quality canned food and preferably raw chickken necs or wings three to four times a week.

post #11 of 35
Patcatpet: They've also done similar tests where the results yeilded that yes, there was a reduction in plaque. It's just like humans, we too get things caught between our teeth, which is why we brush and floss, and which is why we do it for our pets. lol.
Raw chicken necks attribute to the same thing brushing would, or even under the belief of some people, eating dry food.

I just think it's another one of those things that will always be up in the are and people will constantly be changing their opinions on it based on new findings. Much like our struggle with the egg, raw eggs are good, then their bad, the whole egg is good, and now you should only eat the yolk, and it goes on like this. Did you know that eggshells are good for helping ferrets pass hairballs? But then again a lot of people don't believe that.

I encourage you to do your own studies and come to your own conclusions, it's the only way you can feel semi good about what you feed and how you care for your animals.
post #12 of 35
After losing a cat to liver cancer and another, to the complications of diabetes and CRF I did a heap of research before getting my new kittens. Never again would I feed dry food - one manufacturer admits it can cause FLUTD! I know it causes obesity (high carbohydrate content) and therefore diabetes; because it contains no moisture it cannot be good for the cats' kidneys. Much of the canned food is not nutritionally sound - all canned fish is VERY high in phosphorus and most of the canned food we get here in Australia is the same.

Mine are are on free range chicken and chicken necks, free range eggs, yolk only - uncooked white is linked to a particular type of anaemia. I balance the phosphorus and give them a complete supplement. They also get goat's milk yoghurt which is naturally lactose free and contains the EBC for good intestinal health.
After all, a cat is an obligate carnivore and must eat meat and fat if it is to remain healthy!

post #13 of 35
hmmm..i wonder where can i get my hands on free range eggs, chicken necks and chickens.
post #14 of 35
Ro-zie are you teasing or really asking? A lot of stores are selling them, or you can check your phone book for meat distributors or processors, check for more health conscious stores or co-ops, check with holistic vets and pet stores, all sorts of places to look!

Wow, this has been an interesting thread! I don't brush my kitties teeth but they do eat some chicken necks or wings, depending on their mood.

Angel, are they special kitty greenies or are all greenies the same? Not sure my cats would go for those!
post #15 of 35
Chicken necks? Do you mean like raw chicken necks from the grocery store/butcher? Do you just give them a raw neck and they chew on it? what about salmonella? It sounds like it might be a good idea but i am haveing a hard time pictureing it.
post #16 of 35
Rozie: I know that I have seen free range eggs in my grocery store. You probably have them too if you just look. As far as the others one. I don't know, but I'm sure they wouldn't be too hard to find.

Ali: They have the bone figure ones for dogs of all sizes, and then they have like shredded greenies for small animals. People normally sprinkle some on top of their food.
I have the small sized greenie bones. I've offered it to my cats, they sniff, take a lick, and then decide that it's a toy.
The dogs I have used them on, for the ones that ate it, it DID work, improved teeth and breath. Plus they are all natural.


Binkihoo: Regaurding the feeding of RAW/BARF materials, you should do some reading on it and you'll understand how it is fed. Cats eat raw food, they can eat it in our homes, or they can eat it out in the wild, they are much more resistant to the enzymes in things like raw meat, either from the beef at a bucher shop, or from a fresh kill. However most people who do feed RAW or BARF (this includes chicken necks.) Regularly deworm their animals.
There are a lot of great websites out there. Just do a search for RAW Cat Diet.
post #17 of 35
Thanks AngelzOO for the information. Next time I to the grocery store I'll double check for the free range eggs again.
post #18 of 35
I feed only free range - guaranteed no hormones or antibiotics chicken necks driect from a certified free range supplier. The cats demolish a neck within 10 minutes. I observe strict hygiene when preparing their raw food diets and what is not eten in 30 minutes is refrigerated until they are ready to eat it. What is no eten at the second attempt is discarded.

As far as salmonella is concerned - my childhood cat ( black shorthair domestic, was given to me when I was three - there were no vacinnations in those days. He was fed raw meat and a saucer of milk. He supplemented his food intake (we lived in the country) with mice, rats and the occasional rabbit. He was never sick - Vet expenses were zilch. He lived a long and happy life, finally passing away sleeping in the sun under his favourite tree, when I was in the UK and 26 years old. My Aunt, living in the city, had a longhaired ginger cat who ate similar food, but with only mice as an optional extra. He was 25 when he left her for a better place.

Today we vaccinate out cats and feed them canned and dry food. The develop diabetes, oxalate and struvite stones, renal failure, pancreatitis, cancer, chronic renal failure and most are at the Rainbow Bridge by the time they are 16 or 17, often younger.

That is why I have gone back to feeding them the food nature designed them to eat - high protein, low carb raw food - all organic or as near as I can get to it, properly balanced and nutritionally complete!

post #19 of 35
I don't brushed my cats teeth either, the odd time I do. But some cats do not like have their teeth being brushed. I give tartar control treat once a day and that seem to help get rid of the tartar and prevent build up of tartar on the teeth. Also, kibbles help in prevented tartar on cats teeth. They say to get a cat use to having their teeth brushed, is to start when they are kittens and it would be alot easier on the cat.
post #20 of 35
This is a bit unconventional...When I can get my hands on one, I just give my boys a cardboard box (even a shoe box will do), and they chew the corners and edges of the box. I don't let them swallow the pieces, however, the teeth do come out nice an clean! Most of the time I just brush the teeth.
post #21 of 35
Rozie: Reading that made my teeth hurt.. they are crying in pain right now.

I have this thing... like if I put a towel in my mouth and held it with my teeth (cringes... breaths... ok.) It makes me feel ill... much like how some people can't stand the nails on a caulk board type of deal.

Carboard makes me think it would be a similar texture to a towel or shirt whatever, it's something SOFT that's not food, and ewww ok no more that's enough
post #22 of 35
LOL sorry AngelzOO

I can understand tho about the nails on the blackboard, just thinking about it makes me cringe. The boys just go crazy when I put a box in the middle of the living room they just totally attack it, specially my maine coon.
post #23 of 35
My previous two cats loved to tear tough cardboad boxes into tine pieces - small enough to vacuum. They were both on dry food. They both had to have their teeth cleaned and a couple extracted!

post #24 of 35
They don't chew on a box EVERYDAY, in most cases they'll get a box about 2 times a year! Besides I brush there teeth. I'm sure some of us feel we're doing and giving the BEST for our kitties. Some of us don't have the apportunity or the $$ to purchase the free range chickens eggs or necks. In a perfect world we would all love to give our kitties all the free range eggs and necks to there delight.
post #25 of 35
Originally posted by AngelzOO
However most people who do feed RAW or BARF (this includes chicken necks.) Regularly deworm their animals.
What? I'm not sure where you heard that! Raw fed animals rarely get worms. Raw feeding makes animals less susceptible to worms. And most raw feeders don't use traditional medicine like wormers.
post #26 of 35
Regarding "trials" of different kinds of food
& dental hygene. I didn't deliberately do a trial, but....I had been feeding my crew a combination of dry & canned for years. Last year, I started feeding 4 raw chicken necks a night (I have nine cats)....and the condition of my cat's teeth improved dramatically. When the vet was here in October to vaccinate my cats, he looked in my Burmese's mouth. He's always had nasty teeth, and was due a dental. Anyway, the vet was absolutely blown away by how good his teeth are now he's been eating raw necks. And he doesn't need a dental now.

I can't say much, because the information is confidential...and I shouldn't have been told it (I have a vet who gossips, which is handy for me). A manufacturer of dry dog biscuits had a kennel recently run trials, to see what gave better dental results, dry food or raw bones....the dog's who were given raw bones actually came out with the better teeth. This came straight from my vet's mouth. I know the guy who works at the place who did the trials, but legally, he's not allowed to release the information, and I will bet my house on the fact that the pet food company who requested the trial won't be releasing the info. LOL.

Regarding salmonella. Yup, there are risks. Patcatpet goes to a LOT more effort than me. I just buy my crew regular supermarket brand chicken necks & chuck 'em down for the cats to eat. Never had a problem. I've said it before, and I'll say it again. I realise that there is a chance my cats will get salmonella, but by not feeding necks, there is a HUGE chance my cats will end up with gingivitis, and that comes with lots of nasty side effects too. I'm much happier avoiding this problem in the first place.

My vet told me to make sure you rinse the necks under cold water prior to feeding them to the cats as most bacteria are on the outside of the food.

So I can quite honestly say that I HAVE seen a significant improvement in my cat's teeth after starting them on chicken necks.

post #27 of 35
We've never done that. At the last vet visit the vet said our cats teeth are in excellent condition, so white and so healthy!
post #28 of 35
Ali: Your right. I'm not saying I agree with them. I've helped people get their animals onto a raw diet, but I don't tell them to deworm all time. Let me change that to say that many people I have talked to excessivly deworm their animals while on the BARF diet, not MOST, and that it's certaintly not necissary ALL the time.

Sorry for any confusion! I'm sure that's the last thing some people need on this thread, lol.

Misha: I agree with you, there have been lots of test done on biscuts, or dental chews, and then uncooked bones. And I for one have seen the BEST results with the bones! And I have to say that if you have an animal who likes Greenies, and will "eat them the right way" their teeth and breath also benifit a lot from those!
post #29 of 35
Greens? What kind, broccholi & the like? There's a brand of canned food I give them that has veggies in it, they just eat around the veggies. LOL.

I don't worm mine all that often either, probably about 1-2 times a year. We're told to do it often here, but I don't like the idea of over-worming them. We're also told to de-flea monthly (with the product I use), but I don't see why I should do that when I don't see evidence of fleas on them. It's expensive enough looking after the cats, I'd go broke if I had to de-flea them every month. It also worries me using too man made chemicals on them.

post #30 of 35
I have tried to brush my cats teeth from time to time-even started when they were young. It never seems to go over too well, stresses the cats and me out. But I've often felt guilty that I haven't accomplished this. They do get their teeth cleaned when my vet says it's necessary. The raw chicken necks I've never heard of. I'll have to look into that.
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