My cat has bad breath Causes and solutions

The cat is characterized by being a very clean animal. However, it is not immune to bad breath, also called halitosis .

In this case, life with him can suddenly be less pleasant, especially during moments of affection. Cats love to sniff and even lick our faces, and their bad breath can sometimes be very unpleasant.

But it’s not just about love, comfort, or hygiene. Bad breath from a cat can make us suspect serious health problems.

Here I show you a series of tips so that your cat stops having bad breath.

Related to this, you may be interested in the article on cat teeth.

Find the source of the problem

Bad breath, medically known as halitosis , is a medical symptom seen not only in cats, but also humans and dogs.

First, before talking about the causes of bad breath, it is best to separate them into two main groups:

  • Oral and dental problems. They are the most common reasons for bad breath in cats (as well as people). Bacteria that cause plaque and tartar buildup release an unpleasant odor. Also, inflammation of the gums or other tissues in the mouth or tooth decay will cause bad breath.
  • Non-oral causes. These are less common, problems in your cat’s stomach, lungs, kidney disease or certain viral infections can make a cat’s breath worse.

Most common causes of bad breath in your cat

As in humans, the main reason for bad breath in cats is poor dental health, but there can be other causes as well:

  • Dental disease– This is one of the most common causes of halitosis in cats . Saliva and bacteria form plaque on teeth. If the plaque is not removed, it mineralizes, turning into tartar. Plaque and tartar can cause  periodontal disease, gingivitis, or inflammation of the gums.
  • Diet: Diets with fish, liver flavors, treats, or supplements can contribute to bad breath in cats.
  • Body strange  in the mouth : these foreign bodies may be strings, rubber bands, bones and other small objects. If these are not removed, they can contribute to bad breath. If you see a foreign object in your cat’s mouth, don’t try to remove it. Swallowed foreign bodies can cause dangerous obstructions in the esophagus, stomach, or intestines.
  • Excessive salivation: Also called  hypersalivation or ptyalism , excessive salivation usually occurs as a consequence of dental, neurological, or metabolic disease and can lead to significant halitosis.
  • Neurological disease: A cat’s cranial nerves control the movements of its mouth and tongue. Any problem with the cranial nerves can affect the ability to open and close the mouth and control the tongue, resulting in hypersalivation and halitosis. Food and waste can accumulate in the mouth, as the cat is unable to swallow or eliminate excess food, contributing to unpleasant breath.
  • Gingivitis, stomatitis and other oral inflammatory diseases: Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums and stomatitis is the inflammation of the mucosa of the tissues of the mouth, throat and even the underlying bone. Gingivitis and stomatitis in cats are usually caused by bacteria, viruses, immune processes, or allergies. All this can lead to an increase in bad breath in the mouth.
  • Abscesses, tumors or ulcers: Abscesses in the roots of the teeth, oral structures, the nasal cavity or areas behind the eyes can cause bad breath in cats, as can tumors in the same places. Secondary ulcers due to trauma, infections, tumors, allergies, or metabolic diseases can also cause bad breath.
  • Metabolic diseasesKidney and liver diseases can cause halitosis in cats due to the accumulation of toxins in the blood, as these organs cannot eliminate them. Uncontrolled diabetes, stomach and intestinal diseases can cause bad breath in cats, due to inflammation and bacterial overgrowth.


How can you remedy your cat’s bad breath?

Here are five ways to relieve bad breath in your cat:

  1. Brush your teeth often

The first solution that is required to eliminate bad breath from your cat is to regularly brush its teeth.

However, keep in mind that most cats will find it difficult to brush their teeth if they have not been used to it.


  1. Professional teeth cleaning

If it is not possible to brush your cat’s teeth, you can opt for a teeth cleaning carried out by the veterinarian, to avoid the development of other more serious secondary diseases such as those indicated earlier in this article.

The veterinarian should perform a mouth cleaning to our cat always under general anesthesia. The goal is to  remove tartar , made up of bacteria and food debris, accumulated for years on the cat’s teeth, without damaging the enamel of the tooth. In fact, it is often this excess tartar that causes bad breath in cats.

During the process, if there are severely damaged teeth, they can be lost because they are irretrievable. These teeth are still in the mouth because they have been attached to the tartar, but they have long ceased to be functional and if they are left there they will end up producing lumps and abscesses followed by infections.

  1. Choose adapted feed croquettes

There are kibbles specifically designed to promote  good oral hygiene  in cats. These kibbles are often tough and  larger  than normal to force the cat to  chew for a  long time. This chewing process associated with the  abrasive action  of the croquettes will remove the plaque, delaying the deposition of tartar.

However, some vets will tell you that dry food (kibble) is not always recommended for cleaning teeth because some cats do not chew enough. In this case, the kibbles leave residue on the cat’s teeth.

  1. Buy Greenies cat treats

Greenies are special dental treatments that protect and improve the condition of your pet’s gums and teeth. They come in a variety of flavors (chicken and salmon, meat, tuna) and are packed with essential elements like vitamins, minerals, taurine, and chlorophyll.

The treats have a crunchy texture, which removes food debris and tartar stuck to your cat’s teeth. These treats are a great alternative if the cat exclusively eats wet food.

Greenies dental treatments will prevent tartar and plaque from building up on your cat’s teeth, eliminate unpleasant breath, and protect your pet’s gums and teeth by preventing future dental problems.

  1. Product to add to water

Tropiclean is the best-selling pet water additive on the market. You can add it to your pet’s water bowl daily and it will remove tartar and plaque on its own, leaving your cat with cleaner teeth and fresh breath.

The Tropiclean product will help you fight tooth decay, gum disease and other types of periodontal diseases.




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