How To Brush A Cat’s Teeth | Best Dental Products and Treats For Cats With Bad Breath

Both animals and humans have bacteria in their mouths that can lead to bad breath. It’s natural, and for us, it can be easily dealt with thanks to regular tooth brushing, flossing, and the use of mouthwash.

Unfortunately for kitty, she can’t just head to the sink to brush her own teeth.

Now, cats have been around for a LONG time, and they haven’t been brushing their own teeth in the wild. So they don’t really NEED you to brush their teeth for them, unless they never eat dry food or they have specifically developed a really nasty bad breath problem.

Cats are prone to developing various dental problems, including tooth decay and gum diseases. Feeding your kitty with high-quality cat food and mixing up the dry food with wet canned food from time to time is one of the best ways to prevent dental problems.

Crunching on dry food actually helps clean the plaque and build up off of their teeth.

Unfortunately, in some cases, that’s not enough.

The main reason for nasty breath is tartar build-up.

Foul bacteria, lack of enough vitamins, other diseases affecting your pet’s body, or even inherited diseases can also cause bad breath.

While many specialists advise brushing your cat’s teeth at least once or twice a week, there are other ways to maintain your cat’s dental hygiene.

How To Brush A Cat’s Teeth

  • Take your cat to a quiet room with familiar surroundings
  • Don’t hold it too firmly and make sure it’s relaxed and comfortable
  • Use your thumb and index finger to part the kitty’s lips and open its mouth
  • Start brushing with gentle strokes on the outer side of the cat’s teeth
  • Brush both sides, but only on the outside of the teeth
  • Don’t rinse, but allow your cat access to a clean bowl with fresh water

If your cat is trying to scratch or bite you, try wrapping it in a towel. If your furball is feeling too stressed out, don’t use the towel and try brushing only a few teeth each day.

Contrary to popular belief, feeding your kitty with cheese and other types of dairy products, which are considered healthy and beneficial for humans, won’t really help your kitty’s dental hygiene.

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Here’s our top pick for a complete dental kit.

Our review process is unbiased and based on extensive research. If you buy through the links on our site, we may earn a commission.

Sentry Petrodex

  • Reduces plaque and tartar
  • Veterinarian-designed toothbrush
  • Additional finger toothbrush (ideal for kittens)
  • No Foam
  • No Rinsing needed

Using regular toothpaste for your feline is absolutely out of the question. Toothpastes have a number of chemicals which can induce vomiting and/or cause severe damage to your cat’s body.

Sentry Petrodex’s toothpaste is a pet-friendly product specially designed for felines.

The malt toothpaste significantly reduces tartar and prevents further build-up on your furball’s teeth. It protects sensitive gums and is ideal for young kittens as well as for adult and senior cats.

The entire kit features toothpaste, an extremely soft brush, and a special finger brush, which you can use for massaging the cat’s gums. The feline-friendly formula is a leader on the market, and the best part is that you don’t need to rinse as it doesn’t produce foam.

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Reviewing The Best Dental Products To Clean Cat Teeth And Fix Bad Breath

Purina Dentalife Treats

  • Reduces tartar
  • Helps prevent tooth decay
  • No artifiicial flavors or colors
  • Chicken and Salmon flavor options

Purina’s Dentalife dental treats are one of your best choices when it comes to giving your kitty a treat that will also clean her teeth and help her stinky mouth.

The treats are perfectly chewable for cats of all breeds and ages, and your kitty will love the chicken flavor.

The ingredients include taurine, which is essential for any cat’s health, animal fat, calcium, and Vitamin E. The treats are specially designed to be soft and porous so that the crunchy treat surrounds your cat’s teeth from all sides when it bites down. This allows it to clean as it’s being chewed.

Purina’s Dentalife treats are ideal for daily use and help prevent tooth decay and tartar build-up – especially if you’re otherwise feeding your cat wet food only.

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Greenie’s Cat Treats

  • Cleans teeth
  • Reduces tartar
  • Breath freshener
  • Vet recommended
  • Multiple flavor options including chicken, tuna, salmon, and catnip

Feline Greenies dental treats for cats are a top choice when it comes to dental hygiene.

These bites come in a variety of flavors – roasted chicken, salmon, ocean fish, chicken and salmon combo, tuna, beef, and even catnip. The tasty flavors are combined with important ingredients such as vitamins, taurine, minerals, and chlorophyll.

Greenies are low on calories (so you don’t have to worry about fattening kitty up just to clean her teeth) and are suitable for daily use for adult cats 1-year-old or older.

The crunchy texture removes the scraps stuck to your kitty’s teeth and reduces tartar build-up. The variety of flavors guarantees that even the most capricious cats will adore the treats.

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Stick to high-quality cat food and mix up dry with wet food on a regular basis. Use dental treats – it’s your personal choice if you want to give them to your pet daily – and consult with your vet if you want to brush your furball’s teeth. Your cat’s health, including its dental health, should always come as your priority.

Emily Parker

Emily Parker is the Content Manager at Catological. She's passionate about helping cat parents love their cats better by providing the best information and recommendations about everything you'll need to know about your cat, from kitten to senior years. She believes natural, biologically-appropriate products are best...why wouldn't you provide the best for a member of your family?!