5 Fascinating Facts About Your Cat's Teeth

Cats are interesting creatures. They have big personalities, they love a good laser pointer chase, and they can't get enough catnip, which makes them go absolutely bonkers. But did you know that what's inside of their mouths is as interesting as their character traits?

Striped tabby cat giving a big yawn
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If you've ever looked at your cat's teeth, you may have noticed something different than you'd previously expected. You're curious about those little chompers, so here are some fascinating facts about cat teeth that are likely to make you smile.

1.Domestic cats have 30 permanent teeth, also known as adult teeth.

orange cat with mouth open smiling up at camera
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When they are kittens, kittens have 26 baby teeth. This is fewer than both dogs and humans, who have 42 and 32 adult teeth, respectively. Cats get their adult teeth when they are between 11 to 24 weeks, with the different kinds coming in in various stages. For instance, they get their incisors at 11 to 16 weeks, their canines at 12 to 20 weeks, their premolars at 16 to 20 weeks, and their regular molars at 20 to 24 weeks.

2.Unlike humans, cats rarely get cavities.

Gray cat looking up, mewing and having widely open
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This is because cats have a diet that's pretty low in sugar, their teeth are shaped differently, and they don't have the same oral bacteria as humans do. When cats do get cavities, you won't be able to see them, and your cat likely won't show that they are in pain. This is because instinctually, cats don't want to demonstrate any weakness. If they cried out in pain in the wild, a predator could come after them. But, just like human cavities, cat cavities are extremely painful

3. Even though domestic cats mostly eat canned cat food that you provide for them, their teeth are equipped for hunting.

Close-Up Of Cat Yawning with teeth showing
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The teeth are specifically shaped so that cats are able to easily capture prey and tear up their flesh. There is a bleeding groove in their mouths as well. This means that when cats are eating prey, the blood bleeds around the tooth and won't choke the cats.

4. Along with hunting teeth, cats have grooming teeth, too.

Close-Up Of Cat
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The incisors, which are little teeth in the middle of the large canine teeth, can be used to nibble on their fur, which comes in handle when they are cleaning themselves.

5. Cats and kittens can get severe dental and gum diseases, such as feline oral stomatitis.

striped kitten yawns wide open his mouth
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This disease causes the gums to become inflamed, and causes bad breath, excessive salivating, and pain. Cats that get this disease may have a viral disease or issues with their immune system as well. Sometimes, teeth may need to be extracted in order to deal with feline oral stomatitis.

Taking care of your cat’s teeth

It's always important to keep a close eye on your cat's teeth and gums. Cats need to go to the veterinarian to have their teeth cleaned at least once per year. You can regularly brush your cat's teeth— once a day is ideal—by making your cat comfortable, getting a toothbrush specifically for a cat or a finger brush, using pet toothpaste, brushing with gentle motion, and making sure to brush the back teeth as well. In addition, feeding your cat high-quality food will keep their teeth healthy.

Telling the veterinarian about any problems you encounter as soon as possible is critical. This is because when issues like gum disease, gingivitis, and tartar buildup are not treated, it can lead to fatal conditions like heart disease and organ failure. If need be, your veterinarian will at the very least deep clean your cat's teeth. The vet may even give your cat medicine or have to extract a tooth or multiple teeth.