what do cat teeth look like

Your Basic Guide to Cat Teeth

Let’s start by addressing one of the most common queries about cats and their teeth: how many teeth does a cat actually have?

Just like us, cats have 2 sets of teeth. The first set of 26 milk or baby teeth, also known as deciduous teeth, erupt in kittens. Adult cats often have 30 permanent teeth after they shed their milk teeth as they get older.

If you have kittens, you’ll notice that between the ages of 10 weeks and 6–7 months, they become agitated and refuse to eat. That’s because your kittens are teething within this period. When they were seven months old, their permanent teeth ought to have erupted.

During the teething stage, it’s best to give kittens soft, wet and easy-to-chew food as well as soft chew toys. You can buy a few chew toys and see what your kitty loves best to chew on.

Your cat’s teeth resemble those of a human in comparison, but because they don’t chew as much as ours do, cat teeth aren’t as strong. Furthermore, there is a clear distinction between the teeth of cats and humans: while our teeth are round and blunt, theirs are pointed and sharp.

The fact that cat teeth stay in place when they bite down on something, unlike human teeth, which slide out of place, is another feature of cat teeth that makes it essential for cat parents to take care of them. This is caused in part by the structure of their jaw as well as by the extremely tough gums. Because it could seriously harm your cat’s jaw or the inside of her mouth, you should never forcefully remove an object that she has got caught between her teeth.

Cat teeth, in general, are well-designed “tools of the trade”:

  • Canine teeth refer to a cat’s fangs (much like a dogs) These are sharp and are used for hunting and self-defence.
  • Cats have another set of teeth known as incisors. These are for eating soft foods like meat or fish or for grooming.

what do cat teeth look like

Veterinarians advise cleaning and brushing a cat’s teeth one to two times a day at home when it comes to dental care for cats. This can begin around the time the cat is six months old, when their permanent teeth have erupted. Therefore, it’s never too early or too late to begin brushing your beloved cat’s teeth, regardless of how old they are.

7. Cats can still eat after they’ve had teeth removed.

Don’t worry too much if your cat is diagnosed with dental problems that need to be extracted. Cats can live long, healthy lives without losing any or all of their teeth and still eat wet food (and typically even dry!).

“Having a mouth full of teeth is not as important as having a healthy, pain-free mouth,” Dr. Carmichael notes. Additionally, your cat will feel lot better after having those teeth extracted if your veterinarian advises doing so because they are probably painful.

2. Cat teeth are optimized for hunting.

“The crown shapes of cat teeth reflect the function of a true carnivore,” says Dr. Alexander Reiter, associate professor of dentistry and oral surgery and clinician educator at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in Philadelphia. Your cat’s teeth are made for shearing and tearing through their prey like a jungle cat.

The purpose of those large canine teeth, or fangs, is to pierce the skin of prey. Of course, that means that a cat bite really hurts.

FAQ

What should a cats teeth look like?

Clean, White Teeth: Healthy cat teeth should be predominantly white, without excessive yellowing or discoloration. Pink Gums: The gums should be a consistent pink color. Red or white patches, or swollen gums, can be signs of issues.

What age do cats teeth fall out?

When do kitten teeth fall out? At roughly 12 weeks or 3 months. Your cat should have a full set of 30 adult teeth by the age of six months. Some may take up to 9 months to get a full set of adult teeth though, so don’t fret too much if your cat still has some baby teeth at the six-month mark.

Are cats teeth supposed to come out?

Ideally, the baby tooth associated with that permanent tooth falls out. You may even find these hollow shells of the baby teeth on the floor or in your kitten’s bedding, but more often than not the teeth will fall out while the kitten is eating and they will swallow them with the rest of their food.

What do cat teeth look like when they fall out?

Between about three and six months of age, your kitten will lose her deciduous (or “baby”) teeth as her adult teeth come in. The teeth you find will be tiny, and often are just a hollow shell. This is normal, because her body has resorbed the root of the baby teeth to allow them to fall out more easily.