Post # 1
I will be making an appointment with our vet, but just because it’s late at night and I’m starting to worry more:
First, has anyone had a cat that has really bad breath- like if she yawns, you can smell it from a foot or two away?
Secondly, should I be rushing to the vet? She has always had bad breath, however, in the last few weeks, I think it has gotten worse (it used to go away for periods of time, now I don’t believe it is). She has always slept a lot, but (I might be imagining it) I think she is sleeping even more. Also, she is usually annoyed by her brother, but just because he would bother her and try to play, now, most of the time, he can’t even walk by her without her hissing. She has never hissed this much before. So, a lot of changes within the past few weeks. I know with cats, that’s a dangerous sign. (i’m also worried because I think her skin smells too, but that could just be from her washing herself with stinky mouth).
She’s a (2 yr old) black cat so has black gums, but I seriously can’t see anything, gums aren’t inflamed, teeth are white. She is eating regularly (Wellness brand) and drinking water. I know I will probably have to get blood tests for kidney disease and/ or bladder problems (if the internet is right!).
Any experience? Thanks bees!
Post # 3
Bad breath is almost always a guarenteed tooth problem of some sort. Could be gingivitis, allergic to the plaque on her teeth or a lose tooth. If she is in pain it makes sense that she is hissing. She is probably saying I feel awful and I swear if you try anything I will swat you! Just imagine if you had the flu and someone jumped on your stomach. Now just because he hasn’t done it recently, doesn’t mean she doesn’t remember his history of doing it. So she is trying to stop his ideas before they start because she feels bad.
If she has black gums you probably can’t easily tell that the gums are inflamed. Tooth problems can eventually kill a cat- if the bateria goes into their blood stream, but it takes a really long time for that to happen. As long as you get your cat into a vet this week I think your kitty will be fine. I would expect the vet to recommend a tooth cleaning and may possibly extract some teeth during the cleaning.
Post # 4
Wanted to add that normally its the back molars that cause the problems.
Post # 5
I’d take her to the vet. You don’t have to rush but hopefully she can see the vet in the next week or two. She probably has plaque build-up or tooth decay which can lead to health problems further down the road but don’t generally manifest as medical emergencies unless left untreated for years.
It could also just be the kind of food you feed her. But if she’s never had her teeth cleaned, she’s probably overdue. If the vet finds no tooth decay then I’d try feeding her a higher quality food. Usually the non-fish-based foods are less stinky, and dry food is a lot better than wet for keeping the teeth free of plaque.
Post # 6
Bad breath can mean alot of things from actual teeth problems to liver, kidney, gastrointestinal problems etc.
both my cats have horrid breathe but they are 13 yrs old and one is diabetic.
please don’t switch your cat to dry food as this can contribute to many health issues for your kitty. I feed my cats wellness and its one of the best out there for wet food.
Post # 7
I think your cat needs to see a vet. Cats are very prone to teeth problems because of how plaque builds up on their teeth.
Our vet told us that our cat should be fed a primarily dry cat food diet (he recommended Science Diet, IAMs, or Purina One). Wet food increases the likihood of teeth problems. However, teeth cleanings are very important reguardless, but especially if you are feeding wet food. I think we were told once a year with their regular checkup.
I would talk to your vet about the best food to feed your cat and when they should have their teeth cleaned.
Post # 8
definitely take your cat to the vet as soon as you can – it could be a dental disease or signs of more severe illnesses. Good luck. Hope everything is okay with your cat!!
Post # 9
@alwaysmsh: Vets are supposed to push the dry food they sell because they are in contracts with the dry food companies to do so.
please do some research on your own, vets are not taught much about nutrition.
She is already feeding her cat a VERY good wet food.
Post # 10
Your cat likely has periodontal disease and should be looked at soon. Its one of the number one reasons cats die young. It can totally be treated though and after it is brush your kitties teeth!
Post # 11
@RockStar33: I had a friend who was in vet school and they did teach about nutrition. I also have known other people who have degrees in animal science and they have all learned about proper animal nutrition according to their emphisises within that subject.
Personally, I would not feel comfortable disagreeing with a vet when I do not have the knowledge about animals that they do.
Also, the food that I metioned brands also have wet food varieties that are even more expensive than the dry varities so why would vets that are under contract with these companies want to sell you the cheaper food? Also, it wouldn’t make sense that a vet under contract with a company would also suggest competitors. (IAMS, Purina, and Science Diet are competitors of each other).
Whatever the case for dry or wet food, dental hygiene is important to cats as they are prone to plaque development and the problems associated with that.
Post # 12
@alwaysmsh: yes they do teach some nutrition…. and you said your vet told you to feed your cat dry, i would be looking for a new vet if i were you, but to each their own.
There is nothing wrong with doing a bit of your own research, especially if its your beloved pet.
your vet telling you to feed your cat predominantly dry food, is like your doctor telling you to eat mostly McDonalds, Wendy’s, etc….
Post # 13
My cat has serious bad breath. She is very ditzy and will eat bugs so, I have always chalked it off to that. I am definitely going to ask the vet when I take her for her annual visit in February. I’m curious to hear what other kitty parents have to say.
Post # 14
@RockStar33: I completely agree with you about the vets pushing the wrong food. (Around here they all try to sell Science Diet, which is probably one of the WORST foods out there you can feed your pet.)
However, I do feel the need to point out that a lot of wet foods can be just as junky (or even moreso!) than many dry foods. And poor-quality wet foods can and do rot teeth.
On the other hand, many dry foods can cause liver/kidney damage down the road because often the cat is not taking in enough moisture and lives in a constant state of dehydration. This can be remedied by soaking a (good quality!) dry kibble. When we do feed dry, our food of choice is usually Orijen.
I’m actually a huge proponent of a well-balanced raw diet. Cats are obligate carnivores and so much of the stuff in commercial pet food is simply… icky.
However, I understand that not everyone has the money for, or wants to take the time to properly research, a good raw diet for their cat, so I think it’s really important that people research the brands they are buying, and familiarize themselves with the ingredients. There are even a lot of companies now that offer pre-packaged frozen raw food.
Back to the OP, as many PPs have said, I think it’s best if you get your cat in to see a vet. At only 2 years old, she should *not* be having breath like that. Often the breath is a sign of another problem.
Post # 15
@Natakie16: Rushing? No. Making an appointment as soon as is reasonably convenient? Yes.
Probably a tooth thing.
Post # 16
Thanks everyone, I’m calling on Monday. I do hope it’s just a plaque problem.