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Why Does My Cat’s Breath Smell So Bad?

Black and white cat getting its teeth brushedYour cat’s breath isn’t supposed to smell minty-fresh, but if the stink is causing flowers to wilt and your eyes to water, then there’s a problem! So if your cat’s breath stinks like the devil, how do you determine what’s causing the issue and, more importantly, how do you fix it? Here at Germantown Vet, we have dealt with our fair share of smelly felines, and we’re here to help.

Schedule a visit with our friendly veterinarians in Germantown, MD—click the button in the sidebar or call (240) 252-7467 to schedule an appointment.

What Is Causing the Smell?

Okay, first things first—why does your cat’s breath smell so bad? There are a couple common reasons for halitosis (stinky breath) in cats:

  • Build-up of bacteria – one of the most common causes of smelly breath is a build-up of bacteria in your cat’s mouth. You should schedule annual dental cleanings for your cat to ensure good oral health.
  • Diet – your cat’s diet can be a large contributing factor in how their breath smells. If they’re eating a diet with a lot of strong odors—fish, for example—this could cause their breath to have an unpleasant smell.
  • Serious health issue – persistent bad breath in cats can also be caused by some serious health issues, including abnormalities in the mouth, respiratory system, gastrointestinal tract, liver, and kidneys.

The only way you can really know what is causing your cat’s stinky breath is by bringing him or her into the vet for a check-up. A physical examination will allow us to rule out any dangerous medical issues—and if it is a serious health concern, we can start treating it as soon as possible.

How Can You Prevent Smelly Cat Breath?

If your cat’s stinky breath is caused by a build-up of bacteria or his or her diet, there are two simple fixes:

  1. Scheduling a regular dental cleaning – just like your teeth need to be cleaned regularly by a dentist, your pet’s teeth shouldn’t be overlooked! Schedule a veterinary dentistry visit with us at least once a year to get your cat’s teeth cleaned and inspected. This is also a great time for us to evaluate your furry friend’s oral health and note any potential issues.
  2. Changing his or her diet – if you think the food is giving your cat foul breath, try switching it up with a new food that has a less potent odor. You should always slowly transition your cat’s food by mixing a small amount of the new food in with the old and increasing the amount of new food over the course of time until a complete transition is made. This is less likely to cause gastrointestinal upset.

Get Your Cat’s Breath Checked Out Today

The only way you can be sure of the cause of your cat’s stinky breath is to bring him or her into the vet. In Montgomery County, MD, we’re your go-to source for all things veterinary, including dentistry, so give us a call at (240) 252-7467 or contact us online to make an appointment.

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