What is the Cause of My Pet’s Bad Breath?

By Species, By Topic, Care & Wellness, Cats, Dental, Dogs

A dog’s or cat’s breath should not be overly odiferous. If you are noticing a bad smell coming from your pet’s mouth or a change in their breath, it can be an early indicator of a more serious medical problem.

The most common odor-causing problem we encounter is a type of dental disease. The buildup of odor-producing bacteria in the oral cavity, similar to that seen in people, is often associated with a dental or gingival disease. Over time, the build-up of plaque, and then tartar, gives an opportune place for bacteria to proliferate. Unless you are cleaning your pet’s teeth daily (or at least regularly), this build-up continues day after day and week after week. The gingivitis that is associated with much of the dental problems will eventually cause the teeth to loosen, cause pain and cause more severe periodontal disease. Keeping teeth clean, and having regular dental checkups is the easiest way to prevent the progression of this problem.

If there is a foul odor to the mouth, yet the teeth are clean, gingivitis due to other conditions should be explored. Cats can have a hypersensitivity reaction in their mouth that can cause ulcerations which then can cause a foul odor. Certain viral conditions in cats can also cause ulcerations and odor.

Dogs or cats with diabetes, kidney disease, and liver disease can have serious metabolic conditions that can cause the buildup of toxic compounds that also will eventually cause oral lesions and associated changes in your pet’s breath.

If you are noticing any changes in your pet’s breath, or it just really stinks, call CEDARCREST Animal Clinic at 540-943-7577 and schedule a dental checkup.

CEDARCREST Animal Clinic provides medical and surgical care for every stage of your pet's life including preventive wellness care exams and vaccines, spays/neuters, and a variety of specialized care for your dog, cat, avian, or exotic. We are home to the only veterinarian practitioner in Virginia to be double Boarded in Avian and Canine/Feline care and provide care for birds, small mammals, and reptiles of all sorts! Plus, we are home to Virginia's most exclusive dog boarding resort that includes heated floors, an expansive play area, and even webcams so you can watch your pet while you're away. We're located in Fishersville, Virginia, and serve Augusta County and surrounding areas including Waynesboro, Staunton, Harrisonburg, and Charlottesville. 

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