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Fractured Teeth in Cats

Our Poway vets discuss signs and symptoms of fractured teeth in cats and when it warrants an emergency, despite cats not being as recognized for chewing or exploring the world with their mouths as dogs. However, they can still engage in mischief and potentially harm their teeth!

How do cats get broken teeth?

Our vets at Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital frequently encounter fractured teeth in cats. The canine, a longer and sharper tooth located at the front corners of the mouth, is commonly broken in felines.

These breaks typically occur due to fights with other cats, chewing on hard objects, or involvement in car accidents.

A chipped or broken cat tooth constitutes a fracture, and the severity determines the necessary treatment by the veterinarian. Upon bringing your kitty in for a tooth fracture, the vet will conduct a dental examination and determine the most suitable treatment, ranging from tooth fillings to dental surgery.

Recognizing tooth fractures in their cats is crucial for cat owners, given the frequency of these injuries.

How to Tell When a Cat Has a Broken Tooth

There are 4 main types of tooth fractures in cats and dogs:

  1. Uncomplicated crown fracture. A tooth fracture in the crown that does not expose the pulp.
  2. It complicated crown fracture. A crown fracture that does expose the pulp.
  3. Enamel fracture. A fracture or chip to the tooth's enamel (outer protective layer).
  4. Roof fracture. A tooth breakage that reaches the root.

While various types of tooth fractures vary in severity, they typically manifest in the same way: causing painful symptoms in your cat.

Signs & Symptoms of Broken Teeth in Cats

The first step to getting your cat help for their fractured tooth is recognizing the problem in the first place. Below are some signs and symptoms of broken teeth in cats that you might notice. 

If you notice any of these symptoms in your feline friend, contact our Poway vets right away for a dental examination:

  • Food avoidance or chewing on one side of the mouth
  • Drooling
  • Teeth grinding
  • Facial swelling
  • Food falling out of the mouth when eating
  • Squirming or running away when the face is petted
  • Pawing at the mouth

Is a fractured cat tooth an emergency?

If your cat experiences a severe tooth fracture, it can extend to the pulp in the tooth's center, housing soft tissue and nerve endings and potentially causing mouth infection and intense pain. Such a fracture constitutes an emergency for your cat.

As a rule, it's advisable to regard every tooth fracture and crack as an emergency situation. A veterinarian is best equipped to evaluate your cat's tooth condition and ascertain if immediate treatment is necessary.

Has your kitty displayed any signs of oral pain or a fractured tooth? Contact our Poway veterinarians today for a dental examination.

New Patients Welcome

Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Poway companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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