Signs of Tooth and Gum Infections in Cats

Many people say that you do not own a cat because a cat owns you. These animals are often standoffish in comparison to dogs and can take some time to warm up to you and your family. Once you capture a cat’s heart though, you’ll have a friend who will stand by you to the very end. In addition to regular checkups and spaying or neutering your pet, you also need to keep an eye on its dental and oral health. You can keep an eye out for signs and symptoms of infections to know when to make an appointment with your veterinarian.

Trouble Eating

One of the more common symptoms that cats will exhibit is trouble eating. Think about how you felt the last time you had a toothache. You probably stuck to soft foods and liquids because you couldn’t eat solids. Your feline friend will feel the same way. Cats with any type of infection will have a hard time chewing solid foods. You may notice your cat drinking more or avoiding the food dish. The cat may beg for food when you eat because it’s hungry.

Facial Swelling

In more extreme cases of infections, your cat may experience some facial swelling. This often occurs when the infection goes untreated and begins spreading from one tooth along the gum line and to other teeth. Depending on the severity of the infection, the swelling may look like a small lump on one side of the cat’s face or like a large pocket on the face. This infection can also lead to swelling along the cheek and under the chin too.

Swollen Gums

If you notice that your cat isn’t eating and/or has some facial swelling, check the animal’s gums. You’ll want to hold the cat in your lap and pet it until the animal feels relaxed. Carefully open the mouth to check along the gum line. If your cat refuses to sit still, try holding onto the fur on the back of its neck with one hand as you open the mouth. You may see redness or swelling along the gums or a small swollen area near one tooth. This is a type of abscess that the veterinarian will need to drain and then treat with antibiotics. At the first sign of any of these symptoms, make an appointment with a vet clinic that offers feline dentistry services.