Cats, like people, will lose their baby teeth when they fall out before their permanent teeth emerge. Join our Milledgeville veterinarians as they explain kitten teething and how you can help.
When Do Kittens Start Teething?
Around 3 to 4 weeks of age, kittens get their first set of teeth. Because the teeth irritate the mother cat when she is feeding, the deciduous or baby teeth aid in the weaning of the kittens. The emergence of an infant's teeth is normally uneventful, however, you might notice the kittens nibbling on their toys, or maybe their siblings, more than usual.
When Do Kittens Lose Their Baby Teeth?
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.
Your cat's adult teeth will be with her for the rest of her life, so take good care of them! The gold standard for feline dental care includes daily brushing with cat-safe toothpaste, as well as expert teeth cleanings under anesthesia regularly. Some cats may even benefit from dental diets and treats.
You can use this information regarding a kitten's teeth on how to tell how old they are too (if you are unsure). Your vet should be able to tell you how old a kitten is by using its teeth as a guide too!
What Are Some Common Signs Of Kitten Teething?
Some signs that your kitten is starting to teethe include:
- Vocalizing more, from small to loud meows
- Increased chewing, especially on soft items
- Bleeding gums
- Chewing food more slowly
- Eating less
- Hesitant to bite at or shake toys
- Pawing at mouth
- Bad breath
Most of these symptoms should not be a cause for concern. However, you should still monitor your kitten. If your cat loses significant weight because of a lack of appetite, for example, it's a good idea to contact your vet. And while mild bleeding in the gums is normal, you should contact your veterinarian if there is excessive bleeding as this could be a sign of dental issues.
How Can I Help A Teething Kitten?
Luckily, you have several options to help soothe your teething kitten's discomfort. You can try to:
- Offer soft food (tinned kitten food, or kibble soaked in warm water)
- Make sure they get lots of interactive playtime with you to keep them busy and tire them out
- Make ice cubes of low-sodium chicken broth or diluted tuna juice for them to play with and chew on (the ice will soothe irritated gums)
- Provide soft toys to chew on
- Provide pet-safe cat grass for snacking
Discomfort is usually mild and should resolve itself. For extreme cases of pain, make sure you contact your veterinarian.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.