Most kittens nibble, bite and chew on objects in their new forever homes. Pet parents may wonder why their new kitties want to gnaw on everything in sight, including their fingers and toes. These are signs your young cat is teething. Today, you’ll learn six things about your new kitten’s teeth.
You should also bring your new kitten in for its vaccinations and annual checkup at Tipp City Veterinary Hospital.
Cats grow two sets of teeth during their lifetime just like human beings. Kittens are born without any teeth which allows them to nurse without injuring their mothers. At three weeks old, their deciduous teeth start emerging from their gums. They are also called milk, baby, or kitten teeth. These temporary teeth will drop out and later be replaced by adult ones.
Kittens develop a total of 26 baby teeth that rapidly emerge. First, small, translucent teeth named incisors appear at the front of their mouths. Two weeks later, the fangs grow in. Around six months old, their premolars show up.
Young cats baby teeth are sharp and can hurt their nursing mothers. At this stage, pet parents should wean kittens off of nursing and give them solid food. Foster parents of younger cats should stop bottle-feeding kittens once their deciduous teeth appear.
Many kittens begin losing their baby teeth during around 3 1/2 to four months old. They develop tooth buds in their upper and lower jaws when their permanent ones develop. The adult teeth press against the baby ones. They stimulate the kitten’s body to reabsorb the deciduous roots which weaken and disappear. The adult crowns cut through the gums and push the milk teeth out.
Felines have 30 permanent teeth by 6-7 months old. The following schedule shows when your kitty should receive all 30 teeth.
The majority of kitten teething issues occur when cats begin receiving their permanent teeth. Most young felines don’t have problems during the process since their baby ones fall out painlessly. Some swallow their deciduous teeth when they’re eating a meal. Others lose them while playing. Pet parents may find their kitten’s hollowed-out teeth on carpeting in their homes.
Other kittens will experience problems when their permanent teeth emerge. They may drool when they begin teething. Kittens will meow more during this time because their gum line feels sore and swollen. Some kitties who enjoy grabbing things with their mouths can stop picking up their favorite toys when they have tender gums. A few may have a difficult time chewing on their food.
Here are signs your cat is experiencing teething issues:
These issues can also be symptoms of other dental conditions, so have your cat examined by one of veterinary staff at Tipp City Veterinary Hospital.
Here are a few tips to help ease your kitten through the teething process.
Some cats don’t fully reabsorb their baby teeth roots. Veterinarians call these retained teeth: they occupy spaces meant for permanent ones. These teeth cause permanent ones to erupt at odd angles. Additionally, they lead to dental-related issues like teeth crowding, malocclusions, and abnormal bites.
When permanent and baby ones occupy the same socket, food and debris may get trapped between the teeth. This crowding can cause other issues like gingivitis, tartar deposits, and periodontitis. It causes kittens to lose their teeth prematurely since teeth roots can become infected.
Malpositioned teeth cause dental interlock. This issue interferes with the jaw’s development. These problems make it difficult for your pet to eat.
Unless your kitten’s baby tooth is loose, extraction it the best choice to remove your cat’s baby teeth. It is unlikely that your cat’s malocclusion problems will get into the proper position without orthodontic treatment.
Make an appointment with a veterinarian at the Tipp City Veterinary Hospital. We’ll extract your cat’s baby teeth to make sure the adult ones can appear in their proper place. Tooth extractions only require general anesthesia. Our veterinarians will avoid tooth roots during the operation.
Once your cat’s permanent teeth come in, you’ll need to give it proper dental hygiene. These tips will help pet owners manage their cat’s dental care.
Our veterinarians will ensure your growing kitten has the best dental care possible. We’ll check your cat’s mouth to see if it has any dental issues. You can contact us to schedule an annual examination today.
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