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C2004-43

Dear Christopher Cat

My name is Blackie, and I am an 11-year-old cat with bad breath and a drooling problem. I have no trouble chewing dry food, and my mom says my teeth don’t look rotten. What should we do?

Christopher Responds

My sister Chloe had nice teeth, too; nevertheless, the source of her bad breath was her mouth.

Even if your teeth don’t look rotten, you may have infected gums like Chloe did, or even a tooth root abscess not evident to your mom’s caring but untrained eye.

One sign of infected gums is missing teeth, especially the incisors, the tiny teeth in front. A swollen, bright pink gum line also signals gingivitis, a common finding in aging cats.

Another possible cause of your halitosis and drooling could be foreign material stuck in your mouth. For instance, a thread you’ve chewed could be embedded under your tongue, where it might cut into the soft tissue and cause inflammation and infection.

Still another cause of your problem could be a mass under your tongue or in the back of your mouth, where your mom can’t see it.

I’d recommend you visit your veterinarian for a thorough examination. Once the cause is found, your bad breath and drooling can be treated effectively.

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