Gum disease in cats: causes, symptoms and prevention

cat bleeding

Gum disease in cats

Gum disease in cats refers to the inflammation of a cat’s teeth supporting system and it is one of the most common cat diseases. This condition is progressive and more common in older cats. Luckily, there are some measures you can take to prevent it from making your cat lose their teeth.

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What causes gum disease in cats?

When food particles are allowed to rest on a cat’s teeth, bacteria also accumulate to form a layer known as plaque. When plaque combines with saliva and minerals, it forms calculus.

This leads to gingivitis, which is the inflammation of the gumline. You can tell a cat has gingivitis by the redenning of the gum. This is considered an early stage of periodontal disease.

When calculus keeps building up under the gum, it separates the tooth and will foster bacterial formation. This will often lead to pus formation, bone loss, and tissue destruction. The most common bacteria responsible for the formation of gum disease in cats are Peptostreptococcus, Actinomyces, and Porphyromonas.

Symptoms of gum disease in cats

When the periodontal disease has invaded your cat’s mouth, it usually begins with one tooth. If the condition is not treated, it will move on to the other teeth. The disease progresses with time until it reaches a point where the gum recedes and part of the root is exposed.

Some of the symptoms that you should probably be looking at are:

  • Red gums
  • Bad breath
  • Difficulty to eat
  • Spontaneous bleeding from the mouse or the nose
  • Lack of appetite
  • Eating with only one side of the mouth
  • Loose teeth (or missing)


The treatment required will depend on the stage at which it is. During the early stages, treatment will focus on removing plaque. Late stages will involve periodontal splitting, bone replacement procedures, and tissue regeneration if needed.

The best way to prevent periodontal disease in cats is to observe proper hygiene and to have their teeth brushed regularly.

In Dogalize, we have many resources for you to take a look at. Because we believe that your cat deserves to live a happy life, we offer you the means to do so. Visit us to learn more.