- Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 


Cat teeth brushing

April 22nd, 2012, 11:30 PM
Hi everyone,

I was recently on several web sites that describe and explain how to brush a cats teeth. I also looked at videos on how the whole thing is done. It dosn't look too obvious to perform, to say the least...

I have a few cats (Chipcat-Filou, Elphin, Rasta, Gino and Airell), who I think would be co operative enough to allow me to do this to them.
Yet, with some of my other cats (Katla, Stibule, Tonali), this would be quite impossible, considering their caracter...

My question is: Do any of you brush your cat's teeth? What products do you use? Which would you recommend? What is your experience with this? (both positive and negative), do you have any first hand advice on how to start brushing adult cat's teeth when they never had this done before!

I don't think I have been willingly negligent concerning this matter, I simply did not know the importance of it until I read some posts here on the forum and then informed myself about the subject...

As a child, we always had cats, both indoor and barn cats, but we never brushed their teeth! Back then, things were very different...

But better late than never! And I would like to start today!

From what I understand of what I read on the internet, this is a good preventive measure to take to avoid costly dental surgery and painfull treatments.

Any advice would be greatly welcomed!


April 23rd, 2012, 09:05 AM
Better late than never indeed and good on you for your dedication:highfive:
Doing this often increases life expectancy because bad teeth and gums leads to gingivitis. Gingivitis produces nasty bacteria that ends up in the blood stream and compromises kittie's immune system. Same goes with humans btw.

Both our cats get their teeth brushed daily and we got them as adults.

We use a chicken flavoured toothpaste that we got from our vet for one of the cats and then now a malt toothpaste (other cat has allergies) for the other cat.

You can start with your finger if you feel safe. Then you can move onto a longer "thimble" like product for a few days (came in our package of toothbrush and toothpaste) and then the toothbrush. Start slowly.... Brush the teeth and gums.

Hope that may help.

April 25th, 2012, 10:43 PM
Thanks Marko,

I am looking into different types of tooth brushes and tooth paste I can purchase on-line.
I have several cats, and our next vet visit is due beginning of June ( as I have 8 cats, I split the vet visits every 6 months), so I will ask my vet about this, and what he recommends as far as toothpaste and tooth brushes.

I just really want to get a headstart!

I think I will slowly get them used to my rubbing their teeth and gums with my finger, and also buy each of them a child size tooth brush, so they can bite and nibble on it.
At least this will get them use to it.

Some of my cats I will have no problem doing this to, but others...NO WAY they will let me do that.
So I think I will invest in a yearly teeth cleaning at the vet...expensive, but honestly, less expensive than re-constructive surgery on my own fingers!


April 26th, 2012, 09:39 AM
I don't know how it would work with a cat, but those finger brushes (the thimble type deals, I think, that Marko mentioned) work great for getting a dog used to dental brushings. They're make of rubber-like material so even if the cat bites it, your finger would have some protection--but with the yummy toothpaste on it, they likely will be more inclined to lick it than bite at it... The brushes are cheap, too, so if they don't work out, you haven't lost a lot in your investment.

April 26th, 2012, 03:21 PM
I was advised at Roxie's last vet appointment that there was some plaque starting to form so I am investigating brushing her teeth as well.

I have been rubbing her teeth with my finger every day for the last few days to get her used to having my finger in her mouth and so far she has been very co-operative. She actually seems to like when I rub across her front teeth, maybe it feels like a little gum massage! :)

Next step I will introduce the toothpaste with my finger so she can get used to the taste of it, hopefully she will like it.

I am trying to decide what I will use to brush her teeth with, I have not been able to find any really small animal toothbrushes and I have the rubber finger type but Roxie has a very small mouth and the rubber one just doesn't seem to fit very well. Maybe a child's size toothbrush will work well for her too.

I think I read somewhere else where someone also used just a square of gauze. Wrap the gauze around your finger, apply the toothpaste to the gauze and rub their teeth and gums with your finger. I may try this as well.

Come to think of it, Roxie loves to bite the wire bristles on the brush I use to comb her and Kasey with, so maybe she will brush her own teeth if I just hold the handle of a toothbrush :D

April 26th, 2012, 09:02 PM
Shop around online a bit, kasey&roxie--they do make brushes with very small heads on them for cats and small dogs. We have one for Grace and it's smaller than the tip of my pinkie so should be easy to get in a kitty's mouth (kitty willing, anyway :D).

April 26th, 2012, 10:24 PM
I have brushed my cat's teeth by wrapping my finger with some of the gauze type bandage, and rubbing on the teeth. It worked for a couple of my cats, but the present two, no way.

I am trying to get them used to looking at their teeth by lifting the lips and quickly looking. Hopefully that will start working.

take care

May 3rd, 2012, 05:06 AM
Hi everyone!

So far I am getting my cats, Elphin, Chipcat-Filou, and Rasta used to have me rubbing their teeth and 'playing' in their mouth.
My other cats will hear none of it, and made that quite clear!

I will keep going like this for a few weeks, and slowly will start to introduce toothbrushes and toothpaste.
Even if it takes a few weeks/months, I think it's worth it.
I would rather go slow and steady than frighten them off by trying to go too fast.

As for the rest of my tribe who will hear none of it... well I still try slowly and gently, but if it comes down to it, well they will have to get a yearly teeth cleaning at the vet, as I rather go on the preventive side, no matter how much they might hate it!


May 3rd, 2012, 03:28 PM
I brush my dogs teeth every night, not sure if it would be the same for cats. I have tried those finger brushes, but have been bitten so I use a baby toothbrush now and it works really well. I get flavored tooth paste and the vets. They love it. Good luck!

May 4th, 2012, 12:48 PM
So far I am getting my cats...used to have me rubbing their teeth and 'playing' in their mouth.
My other cats will hear none of it, and made that quite clear!Have you tried starting with rubbing a finger and/or gently scratching along the underside of their chins? That's how I had to start with one of's pawsitively irresistible! After a while, I started adding in a gentle rub on the side of the mouth, then a little farther "north" along the lip line etc....a graduated progression into the mouth.

May 5th, 2012, 01:35 AM

I will try your suggestion of rubbing under the chin and 'working my way up'...

Tho some of my cats are really reluctant at this point, others are letting me gently rub their gums for a (very) short period of time.

My next step with the 'willing ones' will be to use a gauze type material and see what happens next.

As I said, I really don't want to rush things and end up not being able to get in their mouths at all!
Even if a few of them need to get it done professionally, at least with the ones who will let me, it will only reinforce our bond...


May 8th, 2012, 12:01 PM
Hi there, I completely understand where you're coming from with brushing cats teeth. I have two cats and neither of them will have let me brush their teeth. I came across an amazing product called Dentasure, it's all natural. It's comes in a spray or gel form; I use the spray on my dog and the gel on my cats because they're not fond of the "spraying" sound. It works to clean their teeth, but also maintains gum health and reverses the effects of gingivitis. Cat dental health is just as important as human dental health, so I understand the frustration with trying to find the best and most cost efficient technique to get those pearly whites, pearly! :D

May 13th, 2012, 10:28 PM

Thanks for the tip HL, I will look inti this product, as I am sure it will be beneficial to my more reluctant cats...