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Friday, March 30, 2012

Dear Diva: What To Do About Cat Breath - Halitosis

Friday March 30, 2012

Dear Diva:

I would like to thank our feline reader "Miss Lily" to this weeks contribution.
     "My veterinarian says that I have "cat breath".  How can I make my breath smell fresher for the sake of my human? Miss Lily".

Before I begin, I thought I'd share something with you.  If you really want to drive your human mad breath on him or her first thing in the morning, after you have eaten a tin of sardines.  Better than their "morning coffee". It is sure to get them out of bed and respond to your needs!

This is what I do: My practice is to make sure I have regular check-ups with my Veterinarian, he or she is the best person determine the state of your overall health. When checking your Internet sources always be sure to look at credible sights and converse with your human companion:

After checking several of my sources, according Pet Education they advise as follows:

How Can I Determine the Cause of My Cat's Bad Breath (Halitosis)?

Your veterinarian is the best person to pinpoint the cause. A physical examination may reveal the cause of your cat’s problem. If not, further tests will likely be recommended. Be ready to answer questions about your cat’s diet, oral hygiene, exercise habits and general attitude and behavior.

Don’t worry, your cat’s breath isn’t supposed to smell minty fresh-but if there’s an extremely strong, fetid odor, there could be an underlying medical problem.

Getting ready for my check-up

 "Bad breath, medically termed 'halitosis,' is a common problem reported by pet owners. The most common cause of halitosis is some sort of dental problem. Bacteria, saliva, and food particles can form plaque, which causes bad breath. This can further develop into gingivitis, or worse, periodontal disease, which will make the breath even more unpleasant or gum disease.

However, persistent bad breath can also indicate more serious medical problems such as abnormalities in the mouth, respiratory system, gastrointestinal tract, liver or kidneys. In all cases, halitosis is a red flag that should be investigated.
In addition to dental problems, other causes of bad breath (may) include:
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Kidney disease
  • Gastrointestinal disease, including cancers, obstructions, and certain infections
  • Infections of areas around the mouth, such as the folds of the lips
  • Respiratory disease, e.g.; some sinus infections
  • Dietary "indiscretions," such as eating stool or spoiled garbage
  • Other oral disease, such as tonsillitis, cancer, trauma, and some autoimmune diseases
Any pet with bad breath should be examined by a veterinarian, unless you know it is caused by something the pet ate. Some causes of bad breath can cause severe and even fatal complications, if not treated promptly.

 Summary check list:

Many people assume that bad breath in cats, especially at a certain age, is a “given”-but that’s not the case. In fact, being proactive about your pet’s oral health will not only make your life together more pleasant, it’s smart preventive medicine:
Regular home brushing with help prevent halitosis
  • Bring your pet in for regular checkups to make sure he has no underlying medical issues that may cause halitosis.
  • Make sure your vet monitors and tracks the state of your cat’s teeth and breath.
  • Brush your cat’s teeth frequently-every day is ideal. (Please be sure to use toothpaste formulated for cats as human toothpaste can upset your pet’s stomach.)
  • Discuss home-use oral health products with your veterinarian to see if there’s a type he or she recommends.
  • Talk to your vet about feeding a diet that will help to prevent dental disease. Some feel that the abrasive action caused by chewing hard kibble can slow down the formation of plaque.
My most favorite kitty toothpaste is chicken flavor (what else would it be LOL). I prefer a soft baby brush or toddler size. The last time I got my teeth cleaned I destroyed the toilet roll and left the bathroom in chaos!

Miss Lily, please be sure to read this to your human companion.  Thank you.

Well, MY darlings, do send me your fan mail and questions :)

**Remember to have your questions in before Friday** Thank you - meow!

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