How to brush your cat’s teeth

Cat owners should start brushing their pet’s teeth as soon as possible – eight to 12 weeks old is best. They don’t need maintenance this young, but by brushing once or twice weekly they will become familiar with the routine when the permanent teeth erupt. It’s a good idea to stop brushing while they are losing their baby teeth as the mouth will be a bit sore. Once all the permanent teeth are in, you can pick up where you left off.

Step 1

Regularly work with the pet’s mouth. With a little patience the pet will soon accept the attention. Make it fun for both of you. Use a lot of praise to gain their confidence. Try to have practice sessions at the same time each day so your cat gets into a routine. If the pet is highly motivated by food, try just before dinner with the meal acting as a reward for co-operating.

Step 2

Start by handling the muzzle and tickling the lips and soon you will be able to rub the teeth and gums with your finger.

Step 3

Use a soft toothbrush or fingerbrush to brush the teeth. Hold the brush at a 45 degree angle to the tooth and brush back and forth and from gum to tip.

Step 4

Finally, you can introduce a pea sized amount of toothpaste made specifically for cats. DO NOT USE human toothpaste as it will upset a pet’s stomach if swallowed.

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