Your Cat’s Bad Breath Might Mean it Has Dangerous Dental Problems

Cats, Dental

Dental disease is the most common health condition veterinarians see. Over half of all cats over the age of three have some form of dental disease.

More than Bad Breath

When we talk about dental disease, most think of unsightly tartar on the teeth, or bad breath. While this is true, our biggest concern is what you can’t see. As dental disease progresses, it leads to more significant consequences below the gum line. This includes bone loss around the tooth or jaw, infection, pain, fistulas, or the loss of the tooth altogether. While there is a lot of overlap between cats and dogs, cats develop oral conditions that are a little more unique to their species. These conditions are resorptive lesions and stomatitis.

Lesions in the Mouth

Resorptive lesions occur when a portion of the tooth develops erosion and loss of the normal tooth structure, somewhat similar to a cavity. This process can occur above the gum line (“crown” of the tooth), or below the gum line (root). This leads to chronic pain in the mouth and can affect appetite. The only treatment for this condition is extraction of the affected teeth. While we can sometimes identify these during a routine exam, in many cases it is not until full mouth x-rays are taken during the dental procedure that these are identified.

Inflammation

Stomatitis is a severe and painful inflammatory condition of the gingiva and mucosa of the mouth. It occurs due to an abnormal immune response to plaque/tartar on the surface of the teeth. Treatment either consists of medical management with immune suppressing drugs, or extraction of most, if not all teeth.

How to Detect Dental Danger

Signs to look for that indicate dental disease in your cat include discolored teeth, bad breath, red or bleeding gums, decreased appetite, weight loss, drooling, and tilting the head or chewing from one side while eating.

As a veterinarian in practice, I have seen first hand the benefits to my patients when their dental disease is properly treated. Owners have described positive changes, where their previously withdrawn cat has become playful, affectionate and full of life. Much like a toothache can become a significant detriment to our own lives, so can a painful tooth have those effects on a cat. If you are concerned that your cat may have dental disease, the first step is scheduling an exam. From there, we can discuss options for oral care at home, or discussing scheduling your cat for a dental procedure at our hospital.

EMRVC can’t wait to take care of your pet. Contact us today to set up an appointment!

Essex Middle River Veterinary Center provides medical and surgical care for cats and dogs at our animal hospital and veterinary clinic in Essex, Maryland, just outside of Baltimore. Our services include preventive wellness care exams, vaccines, spays/neuters, and a variety of specialized care. Our state-of-the-art veterinary offices are conveniently located near I-695 where we see pets from Towson, Honeygo, White Marsh, and other neighboring Baltimore areas.

What to Know if You Are Worried About COVID-19 and Your Cat or Dog

This is an unusual time to live. The COVID-19 pandemic is causing direct impact on almost everyone's lives. Even within the medical community, there is a large amount of uncertainty, because we are learning new things about this virus every day. Uncertainty can lead...

Avoid Letting Your Pet Eat These Common Household Foods, Plants, and Chemicals

Every year, my colleagues and I help treat dozens of pets who are inadvertently exposed to poisonous substances. The best way to keep your pets safe is to prevent them from getting access to dangerous drugs, plants and food. If you believe your pet has been exposed to...

The Dangers of Valentine’s Day Chocolate For Cats and Dogs

Valentine’s Day is a fun holiday, but it also poses a potential problem for both cats and dogs. A big part of Valentine’s Day involves chocolate, which can be toxic to your pets. Chocolate Contains Chemicals That Are Harmful to Dogs and Cats Theobromine is the...

Why Does My Healthy Pet Need a Wellness Screening?

Answer: Because when it comes to pets, not everything is always as it seems and a healthy exterior can hide troubling internal problems. Wellness screenings allow us to: Monitor your pet for abnormalities Act on any early changes Make sure any medications can safely...

More Resource Categories:

The Dangers of Valentine’s Day Chocolate For Cats and Dogs

Valentine’s Day is a fun holiday, but it also poses a potential problem for both cats and dogs. A big part of...

How to Protect Your Pet From Lyme Disease

It’s springtime, which means your pet might be heading outside. This is when it’s good to start thinking about...
Comments Box SVG iconsUsed for the like, share, comment, and reaction icons

This message is only visible to admins:
Problem displaying Facebook posts. Backup cache in use.

Error: The 'manage_pages' permission must be granted before impersonating a user's page.
Type: OAuthException

We are so happy to be able to provide service for all appointments and surgeries again. Since we are still only able to provide curbside service and have to solely rely on our phone system, our call volume has increased significantly. We understand this is making it more difficult for our clients to contact us by having extended wait times. Please set your phone settings to accept blocked calls. We also ask that you use our PetPage App or our pharmacy prescription line to request food and/or medication refills. EMRVC appreciates your continued patience during these times.

APPOINTMENT REQUEST:
connect.allydvm.com/practice/essexmrv/appointment_request

PRESCRIPTION REFILL REQUEST:
connect.allydvm.com/practice/essexmrv/refill_request
... See MoreSee Less

We are so happy to be able to provide service for all appointments and surgeries again.  Since we are still only able to provide curbside service and have to solely rely on our phone system, our call volume has increased significantly.  We understand this is making it more difficult for our clients to contact us by having extended wait times.  Please set your phone settings to accept blocked calls.  We also ask that you use our PetPage App or our pharmacy prescription line to request food and/or medication refills. EMRVC appreciates your continued patience during these times. 

APPOINTMENT REQUEST:
https://connect.allydvm.com/practice/essexmrv/appointment_request

PRESCRIPTION REFILL REQUEST:
https://connect.allydvm.com/practice/essexmrv/refill_request

Happy Mother's Day from all of us at EMRVC - Has your pet ever been a mom? If so, share some pictures of mom and kids!! If not, share pictures of you and your fur babies! ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Princess & Chase

My baby Benji 🥰

My boy 💕

View more comments

Today is National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day:

If Covid-19 taught us nothing else, it is to be prepared for the unexpected. In recognition of National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day, our doctors have gathered a list of items they feel is important to keep prepared and ready in the event of a disaster. Keeping this things together and ready to go can save a lot of time and headache in the event you would have to evacuate quickly with your pet:

Food, Medication and Supplies
· 3-7 days’ worth of dry and canned (pop-top) food*
· Two-week supply of medicine*
· At least 7 days’ supply of water
· Feeding dish and water bowl
· Liquid dish soap
· Litter, litter pan, and scoop (shirt box with plastic bag works well for pan)
· Newspaper, paper towels, and trash bags
*These items must be rotated and replaced to ensure they don’t expire
Important Documents
· Identification papers including proof of ownership
· Medical records and medication instructions
· Emergency contact list, including veterinarian and pharmacy
· Photo of your pet (preferably with you)
Travel Supplies
· Crate or pet carrier labeled with your contact information
· Extra collar/harness with ID tags and leash
· Flashlight, extra batteries
· Muzzle
Comfort Items
· Favorite toys and treats
· Extra blanket or familiar bedding
... See MoreSee Less

Today is National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day:

If Covid-19 taught us nothing else, it is to be prepared for the unexpected. In recognition of National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day, our doctors have gathered a list of items they feel is important to keep prepared and ready in the event of a disaster. Keeping this things together and ready to go can save a lot of time and headache in the event you would have to evacuate quickly with your pet:

Food, Medication and Supplies
·    3-7 days’ worth of dry and canned (pop-top) food*
·    Two-week supply of medicine*
·    At least 7 days’ supply of water
·    Feeding dish and water bowl
·    Liquid dish soap
·    Litter, litter pan, and scoop (shirt box with plastic bag works well for pan)
·    Newspaper, paper towels, and trash bags
*These items must be rotated and replaced to ensure they don’t expire
Important Documents
·    Identification papers including proof of ownership
·    Medical records and medication instructions
·    Emergency contact list, including veterinarian and pharmacy
·    Photo of your pet (preferably with you)
Travel Supplies
·    Crate or pet carrier labeled with your contact information
·    Extra collar/harness with ID tags and leash
·    Flashlight, extra batteries
·    Muzzle
Comfort Items
·    Favorite toys and treats
·    Extra blanket or familiar bedding

EXCITING NEWS!
The Maryland State Veterinary Board has lifted some restrictions that were placed upon all Maryland hospitals due to COVID-19. We will now be allowed to schedule all types of visits and surgeries, including nail trims. We will be continuing our curbside service until further mandates are lifted. Give us a call at 410-687-1111 to schedule your appointment. EMRVC will be here for you and your pet through sickness and in health.
... See MoreSee Less

EXCITING NEWS!
The Maryland State Veterinary Board has lifted some restrictions that were placed upon all Maryland hospitals due to COVID-19. We will now be allowed to schedule all types of visits and surgeries, including nail trims. We will be continuing our curbside service until further mandates are lifted. Give us a call at 410-687-1111 to schedule your appointment. EMRVC will be here for you and your pet through sickness and in health.

Comment on Facebook

Mandi Mars

You guys are the best ! Thanks for seeing Skylee in the car since she is petrified of vet offices !!

Awesome, forgot to call today. My Maggie needs a nail trim, she's been slipping on the hard floors and stairs 😢 her black nails are tough for me to trim and she won't let me. You all are awesome!!

And here’s the other amazing tech seeing Skye in the car ! Thank you again

Thank you so much for all that you do and continue to do. As always, the staff is wonderful, even during this extra stressful time. Stay safe 💜

Great news so I shouldn't have any issues next week to get my fur baby's Heart Guard meds

Great Vet's !!

Awesome, now I can schedule my cats dental

Awesome

View more comments