What To Do If Your Cat Loses A Tooth

Posted on: 14 March 2019

Most pet parents would be alarmed to notice a tooth left behind by a pet, and cat owners are no different. If you think that your cat has lost a whole tooth or a portion of a tooth, here's what you need to know about what to do next.

The Exception

It might surprise you to learn that if your cat is still just a kitten, there's likely nothing wrong going on here at all. While many pet parents don't think about it, kittens are born with so-called 'milk teeth' just like humans are. These small baby teeth are designed to only stay in the mouth until the adult teeth are ready to move in.

When this process is finished, a kitten's baby teeth will naturally loosen. The roots are absorbed into the body, the baby teeth fall out, and the adult teeth will gradually move into place. While it's still a good idea to talk to your vet to ensure that the process is going well, if your cat is still a kitten, you shouldn't worry too much.

Why There's Still a Problem For Adult Cats

Losing an adult tooth is something that a cat should never go through. Those teeth are meant to be with them for life, after all. Unfortunately, if your cat loses a tooth, the worst may not be over just yet.

Losing a tooth likely means that your cat is going through a major dental health problem. Many cats end up experiencing gum disease that can become so severe that it starts to wear away at the bones in the mouth. Without treatment, your cat's one lost tooth could easily become two, three, or even all of their teeth. In the meantime, they could be in a lot of pain, have difficulty eating, or have bleeding from the mouth. This obviously calls for medical attention.

Getting Help

If your cat has lost a tooth - no matter the reason why - you should immediately visit a veterinarian. Save the tooth if you can, and bring it with you so your vet can evaluate why it fell out.

If your cat has gum disease or is in danger of losing other teeth, your vet will recommend a thorough cleaning while your cat is under general anesthesia. This is your cat's best bet of saving its remaining teeth and can help to reverse the gum disease before it risks causing other problems down the road, like kidney disease.

While most pet parents won't discover their cat's teeth lying around outside of their mouth, it's a good idea to know what to do if it ever happens. For more information, contact a veterinarian hospital near you.