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Why cat grind it's teeth?

(February 24, 2010)

Grinding of teeth in cats could be attributable to multiple causes. This is not usually typical behavior in cats but is usually indicative of some problem. It might have no health significance but could simply be some habit that the cat has picked up. On the other hand, it is likely that oral pain is the cause as grinding of teeth is one of the classic ways in which cats manifest their frustration. If it is a kitten that is biting his or her teeth, then there is the likelihood of improper bite. There are other possibilities if the grinding is observed in a grown cat and could be indicative of oral problems.

The veterinarian should be able to take a closer look at the cat’s mouth and look for any signs of dental problems. Cats could get a number of dental problems and it could be that one of those is irritating the cat and causing that grinding behavior. For instance, a sharp tooth or a gum problem could be aggravating enough to cause the cat to start this grinding behavior. Diet could be yet another issue and one could test this by changing diet, such as offering a dry diet as opposed to a wet one. There is also the possibility that a wet diet could be the problem because the cat’s gums are not able to get enough bite considering the wet diet. 

Grinding teeth, if accompanied by other symptoms such as sunken eyes could also indicate dehydration. Stomach acid is usually a complication which results from this kind of dehydration and could be the reason why the grinding starts. One would need to watch out for symptoms that accompany this grinding teeth behavior which may be reported to the vet. At the veterinarian’s visit, point of the grinding of teeth by your cat and ask him or her to look at health causes which might underlie such behavior. As mentioned earlier, it could just be a habit that the cat has recently picked up and could pass. It could be that there is something which has caused the cat some irritation and the cause must be identified. The reasons listed above are just some of the possible reasons which may have induced the cat to start grinding his or her teeth. Only a proper checkup would be able to tell the vet more about the cat’s behavior and possible causes.

Submitted by M A on February 24, 2010 at 11:38


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