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Alternative to Teeth Brushing

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
There's no way my kitties will let me brush their teeth. Are there any other ways to prevent tartar buildup. Do Feline Greenies really help or not? What about Royal Canin Oral Care food?
post #2 of 13
Hard treats and food might help if cats actually chewed it, but most cats don't. They'll bite the food once or twice at the most to break it up then swallow it. If you've ever cleaned up kitty regurgitation you'll notice that there's often completely whole pieces of food.

There are some high end dental treats that make cats chew them, such as the ones CET makes.

There's also the stuff that AddieBee uses, but I don't have any personal experience with that.
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by strange_wings View Post
Hard treats and food might help if cats actually chewed it, but most cats don't. They'll bite the food once or twice at the most to break it up then swallow it. If you've ever cleaned up kitty regurgitation you'll notice that there's often completely whole pieces of food.

There are some high end dental treats that make cats chew them, such as the ones CET makes.

There's also the stuff that AddieBee uses, but I don't have any personal experience with that.
What does CET stand for and what does Addie Bee use?

Yeah, I've seen kitty barf and it does indeed contain pieces of barely chewed kibble.
post #4 of 13
Hi. I use PlaqueOff. It is a powder that is sprinkled on the wet food... the dose amount is about the size of half the tip of your finger. The only concern is if your kitty is hyperthyroid because the powder is made of seaweed of all things and that has a trace amt of iodine in it.

The other things that I do is give them enzyme toothpaste in their mouths... half will just lick it off, the other's have to be pinned and "pasted."

I use Biotene Veterinary Maintenance gel or Virbac CET enzyme paste. Good prices on Entirelypet.com

Virbac also makes special chews that can help. Don't know what CET stands for but it must have something to do with an active ingredient -chlorhexidine.

I have also started using some Biotene specially formulated to go in the drinking water and have begun to only use the PlaqueOff every other day.
post #5 of 13
My vet recommended taking a q-tip and dipping it in hydrogen peroxide, then massaging into the gumline. It's non-toxic and tastes like water.
post #6 of 13
If you can get them to eat raw meat chunks or strips a few times a week that will help, also chicken necks/wings are excellent for cleaning teeth.
post #7 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by stephanietx View Post
It's non-toxic and tastes like water.
You must have some funky tasting water. Peroxide is somewhat bitter, though diluting it with water can help lessen the taste of it so that it's not as bad.
post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by ConsumerKitty View Post
There's no way my kitties will let me brush their teeth. Are there any other ways to prevent tartar buildup. Do Feline Greenies really help or not? What about Royal Canin Oral Care food?
Your cats can be trained to let you brush their teeth. Virbac's c.e.t. paste is the best paste to use, it is an enzymatic paste, which means in breaks down bacteria. Just getting the c.e.t. past into their mouths is beneficial, but of course contact with tooth and gum is better.

My training method:

I started by just getting them used to me rubbing my finger lightly along their lip line, either side. Most cats like this any way. (if you are planning to use a brush, you might start this with the brush. I have always just used my finger)

While doing this, I was putting the c.e.t. toothpaste on a paw for them to lick off, and get used to the taste. (I use the poultry flavor, they actually like it!)

This helps them associate the finger (or brush) rubbing along the mouth with the taste of the c.e.t.

Then, I started making the action more purposeful, putting them in the "holding position", which is: me on my knees, feet crossed behind me, cat between my knees facing out.

Using a little more pressure which parts the lips, I'd be rubbing their teeth and gums instead of the lips, while they get used to me restraining them while doing it. After the action, again, putting a little paste on the paw.

So now they are associating the action with the taste of the c.e.t.

From there, I put the c.e.t. toothpaste on my finger, hold them in position, and rub it into their teeth and gums.

This was a bit messy, so lately I've learned to use my other hand to kind of pry open the lips so I can make direct contact with the molars and gumline.

All this took time of course, but cats can get used to any sort of handling if it's done gradually and gently enough.

Oh,I forgot to mention..I always wash my hands before starting and between each cat.

Even Mazy cat allows this nightly. My vet was amazed when I told her! (by the way Mazy had a check up yesterday and her teeth are tartar free, thanks to the c.e.t.!)
post #9 of 13
I meant to add, this training took about a month, a little more than that for Mazy cat.

An added benefit in training your cats to accept this is that they get accustomed to being handled by you. This can be very important if there comes a time when one of your cats needs to be medicated or have some other type of frequent handling done.

Mazy does not like to be handled in any way, and used to bite and scratch something terrible, but she has learned to accept it from me. Not just tooth brushing, but medicating and nail trimming too.

Grooming is still a big NO for Mazy, but we're still working on it, it's only been 5 1/2 years after all!
post #10 of 13
It's actually best to use Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide when putting it in a cat's mouth. Humans can use hydrogen peroxide to rinse - but we don't swallow it.

The Biotene that is added to the water IS basically a diluted Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide. For pets, you can use Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide 3% or 4.5% solution and add 1 1/2 teaspoons to 1 gallon of water. Use that to fill up their dishes. It helps their mouth health, and it's generally good for their immune system. In fact, that mixture is good for people to drink instead of drinking water too.

This, however, should not be considered an alternative to brushing - just a supplement to it.
post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by LDG View Post
It's actually best to use Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide when putting it in a cat's mouth. Humans can use hydrogen peroxide to rinse - but we don't swallow it.

The Biotene that is added to the water IS basically a diluted Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide. For pets, you can use Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide 3% or 4.5% solution and add 1 1/2 teaspoons to 1 gallon of water. Use that to fill up their dishes. It helps their mouth health, and it's generally good for their immune system. In fact, that mixture is good for people to drink instead of drinking water too.

This, however, should not be considered an alternative to brushing - just a supplement to it.
I am not about to teach 7 cats to let me brush their teeth. Some lick off the paste, others get it rubbed on their teeth. The Biotene gel claims to be brushless but is supposed to be used 2x/day. In general since I have been using PlaqueOff and giving them the paste/gel ... I have seen an improvement in their teeth, including Archie who had early periodontal disease. I will see what the vet has to say when he goes in for his annual in July.

ETA - where can I get food grade Hydro perox?
post #12 of 13
This is the cheapest I've found it. Remember - if you order a gallon, you're supposed to dilute it - 1 1/2 teaspoons of the 3% food grade hydrogen peroxide INTO a gallon of water. We use distilled water.

FYI, the only food grade Hydrogen Peroxide approved is a 35% solution. Those who sell it buy the food grade and basically pre-dilute for us.

Scroll down the page to find the ordering info (the information on the way there is pretty interesting with some good links ). http://www.dancingalgae.com/hydrogenperoxide.html
post #13 of 13
I feed mine Greenies treats. They are a hard dental treat that cats looove!
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