As with humans and dogs, dental care is one of the best ways to help keep your feline friend’s teeth and gums healthy, even if their diet is very healthy. Brushing a cat’s teeth is a very difficult task, it is important to start as soon as possible so that it gets used to the process.

The earlier you start cleaning your cat’s teeth, the better it will be for her health and the easier the job will be because it will feel totally normal to her. Older cats will have already built their pattern of what is normal and what is not, and the task will be more difficult for something that is naturally not ideal for them.

Brushing the cat’s teeth: And if he does not let himself be done?

If you’ve ever made a failed attempt to brush your cat’s teeth, you’re not alone, cats hate it. Before attempting toothbrushing, it is recommended that your cat get used to having their lips raised and their teeth exposed for short periods of time.

To get him used to it, reward him every time he keeps his teeth exposed so that he associates this bad moment with a future reward. Do this every time you brush his teeth so that he lets go thanks to this positive association.

What should I use to brush my cat’s teeth?

Use a moistened soft-bristled pet toothbrush. If you don’t have it, you can also use a children’s toothbrush or cotton swab. You can find this type of toothbrush in specialized stores and websites (avoid Amazon, which often offers low-end models).

Should I use a special paste to brush my cat’s teeth?

The best option is pet toothpaste, which may have a special flavor that cats like. Never use human toothpaste, baking soda or salt. Although safe for you, these cleaning products can be harmful to your cat if ingested.

Tips for cleaning cat teeth at home

Keep the following tips in mind to make the process easier for you and more comfortable for your feline friend. 

  • Find a comfortable place , like your lap or a favorite resting place for your cat to sit during the brushing session. The place should be quiet and not cause stress to your cat.
  • Use a cat toothbrush or recommended alternative. Human toothbrushes are not suitable for cat teeth and gums.
  • Never use human toothpaste . Instead, use a pet toothpaste with a flavor that felines prefer so it behaves well when smelling it.
  • Give your cat a small sample of toothpaste so she can taste it. He will then be more docile because he will recognize the smell when the teeth brushing takes place.
  • Lift his lip to expose the surfaces of his gums and teeth. Take it easy so he doesn’t feel offended.
  • Brush gently to clean your teeth and gums, just as you would your own brushing.
  • Clean the outer surfaces (which are in contact with the cheek), as most pets do not allow the inner surface of their teeth to be brushed.
  • Remember to reach the upper posterior molars and canines , as these teeth tend to accumulate dental calculus quickly.
  • Reward him at the end: For example with a game or food so that he associates the brushing of the cat’s teeth with something pleasant and lets himself be done more easily the next time. Positive reinforcement is essential for your cat to understand what he is doing right and wrong.

How often should I brush my cat’s teeth at home?

You should brush your cat’s teeth as often as possible. Ideally, do this every day. There is a whole range of dental care products, pastes, rinses, brushes, tartar control “treats” to help give your cat the daily dental care they need. 

At a minimum, check their condition regularly and clean when you find any imperfections.

How often should I have my cat cleaned by a professional?

Even with a thorough home dental care routine, adult cats should have their teeth professionally cleaned at least once a year. These cleanings allow us to assess your cat’s overall oral health and prevent dental tartar buildup, gingivitis or gum disease, and other conditions that may cause weight loss,  drooling  or diseases that are fatal if left untreated, such as systemic failures and heart disease.

Like us, dental problems can lead to more serious health problems, the symptoms of which are only the consequence, so it is vital to preserve their teeth to avoid diseases, especially if your cat is old.

What are the advantages?

There are many benefits to brushing your cat’s teeth on a regular basis. First of all, it allows good oral hygiene and prevents oral infections and tartar problems, your cat will need fewer visits to the veterinarian.

Then, your cat will have less serious tooth problems, for example he will have less chance of losing a tooth.

Finally, your cat will have better breath.

How to brush your cat’s teeth: The final word

Brushing your cat’s teeth isn’t that difficult when you know the proper practices, and best of all, it will keep her healthy much longer than if those teeth were never treated.