Dental Care for Pets: Cat Teeth vs. Dog Teeth

In the age-old battle of cats vs. dogs, it’s a draw when it comes to their dental health.

From temperament to toys, cats and dogs are vastly different. But what about your pet’s teeth? We’re not going to fight like cats and dogs, but we are going to compare and contrast in a dental duel. If you find that your dog is beginning to have issues with their teeth there is dog insurance that could help you get the treatment your furry pal needs.

Cats start with 26 teeth and then get 30 full adult teeth by the time they’re 6 months old. Dogs have more pearly whites than their feline friends. They start with 28 baby teeth and eventually have 42 permanent teeth. Consequently, if you have a young dog at home, you might want to incorporate some Puppy Vitamins into their diet to ensure that they get the vitamins and minerals needed for good oral health.

Both animals are prone to dental disease—especially once they’re a few years old. It’s estimated that at least 70% of cats and 80% of dogs have gum disease by age 3. Symptoms of gum disease differs between the two animals, so it’s important to ask your vet about your pet’s dental health at their annual checkup.

You can help take care of your dog or cat’s teeth at home to reduce the risk of dental disease. You may wish to head to Kneadcat ( to learn more about caring for your feline friend’s general and oral health. Toothbrushes are the most effective way to remove plaque. An angled, soft-bristled brush can help you get into those nooks and crannies.

Cats tend to resist more than dogs, so take baby steps before brushing. Begin by dipping your fingers in tuna water and then gently rubbing their gums with gauze. Next use a finger brush, eventually graduating to a cat toothbrush. But no kitty is complaisant. Be patient—experiment with different toothpaste flavors, brushes and dental rinses.

If you have more questions about your pet’s teeth, call your veterinarian for advice.


Cats Dogs
Number of Teeth 30 42
Susceptible to Dental Disease Yes Yes, especially smaller breeds
Broken Teeth Yes Yes
Crowded or Misaligned Teeth Yes, especially in certain breeds Yes
Bad Breath Yes, but not as noticeable Yes

Sources: Teeth, Diseases of the Mouth & Dental Care in Dogs; Teeth, Diseases of the Mouth & Dental Care in Cats; VetStreet; PetHealth101


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3 Responses to “Dental Care for Pets: Cat Teeth vs. Dog Teeth”

  1. Monica Chavez
    06/21/2018 at 3:50 pm #

    It was interesting to read that cats start with 26 teeth and then 30 full adult teeth by the time they’re 6 months old. My cat is 2 years old, and the other day she lost a tooth. I’m kind of worried that she doesn’t have very good hygiene, so I’ll probably have to take her to a vet to get her teeth brushed and taken care of.

  2. Dave Anderson
    01/15/2019 at 3:50 pm #

    It is really interesting that so many dogs get gum disease by age three. That is something that I would want to help my pets to avoid having. Maybe it would be good for me to take them to a veterinarian so that I can help keep that from happening to them.

  3. Linda H. Gardner
    03/22/2019 at 10:05 pm #

    What a great article! I agree that it would be wise to condition dogs

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