Three Ways Dry Kibble Can Warn You Of Poor Oral Health For Your Cat

29 April 2019
 Categories: Pets & Animals, Blog


Feeding cats dry kibble is perfectly acceptable and can provide adequate nutrition to cats of all ages. However, some cats will experience difficulties with kibble. While your first thought might be to change their cat food, you should pay heed to any difficulties your cat has with kibble as a warning sign about their teeth, not their food. Here are three early warning signs that your cat is having an oral health problem that can be discovered by the way that they eat their dry food.

Dropping Treats

One of the first signs that cats often exhibit when eating dry food is an inability to pick it up and hold it in their mouths. If you've handed dry treats to your cat in the past and they're now dropping them on the floor, this could indicate an issue. If your cat walks away from the food completely right after dropping it, they may simply not be interested in the flavor. However, if they continue to sniff at it or try eating it off the ground, this could indicate that their teeth are hurting them in a way that makes gripping it from your fingers impossible or too painful to attempt.

Unwillingness to Eat

If all you give your cat to eat is dry food, they may show signs of losing weight or could simply refuse to eat when the food is put out. If you notice that your cat has lost interest in eating, you should seek help immediately, as this can lead to additional health risks like fatty liver disease.

However, you might notice that some cats come around and eat after the food has been out for a while. This could be because by the food being exposed to the air for a while, as dry food can become softer due to staleness. Your cat may be coming back either out of desperation or because the food is easier for them to eat with bad teeth after it's been out of the bag or bin for some time.

Growling While Eating

Lastly, a cat that growls while it eats might seem as though it's being territorial or just amusing. Unfortunately, this symptom is often misunderstood by pet parents and really doesn't indicate either of these signs, most of the time.

If your cat doesn't normally growl while eating and has suddenly picked up the habit, they aren't doing it to be funny, and they probably aren't being territorial. Instead, it may be an indication that your cat is experiencing significant pain while trying to crunch through their food.

You can easily test this by putting out wet food, even as a one-time offering. If your cat eats it without growling, it's probably because the softer consistency lets them eat it without as much pain.

You have to keep in mind that cats generally don't like to show pain, as demonstrating weakness can lead to being attacked in the wild, so if your cat is growling, that's a sign that their pain level is already quite high.

If your cat eats kibble at all and shows any of these signs, it's worth visiting a vet to have their teeth checked. If a problem is found, it can be resolved, and your cat can be protected from further pain or health complications.

For more information, contact a local clinic like Center-Sinai Animal Hospital