Do cats have clean mouths?

There is a common notion that a dog’s mouth is several times cleaner than a human’s. This is why dog owners would not mind being licked and kissed by the pet on the face and on the lips. Dogs and cats are the most popular pets. Is it possible for cats to have clean mouths too? That cats and dogs have clean mouths is only an old wives tale. With its indiscriminate eating habits, dogs cannot be considered even remotely to have clean mouths. Unlike dogs, cats, especially the indoor ones may not have the chance to raid trash cans but these animals do not have clean mouths either. Cat’s mouths, just like dogs’ are not clean because they are full of bacteria.

Cats are noted for being fastidious groomers. These furry pets would spend long hours licking and cleaning the fur. In spite of this fact, cat owners would still make it a point to regularly use the brush on the pet’s hair. Aside from being ideal bonding moments, cat owners really enjoy petting and cuddling the pet. However, not many cat owners would take the time to make sure that the dental hygiene of the pet is maintained. Ask any cat owner if he/she brushes the teeth of the pet and the most common answer would be NO! We humans brush the teeth two or three times a day. We also floss regularly. And yet, we cannot say that our mouths are clean and bacteria free. Cats don’t brush the teeth and don’t floss. These animals also have the inclination to drink from the toilet bowl. Some would even relish eating a prey’s carrion. Definitely, cats do not have clean mouths. It is expected that a cat’s mouth would contain disease causing germs. The saliva of the cat can be contaminated with bacteria. A bite is not necessary to get a humans infected. The pet that has licked a scratch or a cut on the skin can be the cause of infection. Biting is not a common behavior of cats but some individuals can bite the petting hand. The jaws of the cat are not as strong as the jaws of a dog. A dog bite usually causes skin lacerations. Cats though have small but needle-sharp teeth. A cat’s teeth that have sunk into a hand would reach bones and tissues. Additionally, the puncture wound can introduce bacteria deep into the tissues.

Keeping the mouth of the cat clean is not impossible. It follows that a healthy cat would also have a clean mouth. The cat though cannot brush its own teeth…the cat cannot drive itself to an animal dentist no matter how painful the gingivitis or periodontitis is. Bad breath is one of the common signs that the pet has oral concerns. It is a clear sign that the dental health of the cat has to be addressed. What should cat parents do to ensure the cleanliness of the pet’s mouth? Needless to say, the cat’s teeth have to be regularly brushed. The oral hygiene can be maintained by giving the cat a well balanced diet and treats that will help prevent tartar and plaque buildup. An oral solution specifically made for cats can be used to resolve the pet’s bad breath. Lastly, an animal dentist visit at least once a year would be very important. Periodontal diseases and cases that need oral surgery would be beyond the capacity of a well meaning and concerned cat owner to perform. Oral concerns of this kind would need professional medical attention.