What to Feed a Cat With a Sore Mouth?

So this was me, but unfortunately I don’t think I will have to worry about his long term companion. My surviving cat was *also* diagnosed with a different cancer. His was operable, and the healing process is okay, but he doesn’t want to eat. I have 48 hours to get him eating normally before we go to a feeding tube. You are not my vet. My vet sees him so often he is officially sick of both of us, but maybe you have been successful in a similar case? Details inside.

tl;dr: 13 year old cat recovering from extensive oral surgery. He has some swelling from the healing process, and it’s making eating painful with anything except mush.

He doesn’t like mush. We’re in risky territory if he goes on not eating. Any tips for helping tempt him?At the time my other cat died, we had been monitoring the old guy for what looked like an infected tooth.

He has a long history of gingivitis/stomatitis and I brush his teeth daily. The vet had been in to see it a number of times, was of the opinion it was healing, but we were keeping an eye on it in case it caused him pain. However, it didn’t heal, and when we took a look at it right before Christmas it was clearly getting worse.

They took out the tooth and did a biopsy of the surrounding tissue since it looked suspiciously infected. Diagnosis of SCC, caught very early. They got the whole tumor in the biopsy, with clean but narrow margins.

However, because SCC is so locally aggressive, my vets recommended that we operate more aggressively, to clear a 1cm margin around the site. Given his age, I agonised over the choices, but my vet sincerely believed that this was the best solution and would buy him at least some pain free months. So he was operated on last Monday to remove three more teeth and a piece of his jaw.

The surgery went well, and he was home the same day. Initially the healing process was smooth and he started eating again on his own. Unfortunately on Thursday there was extensive swelling at the site.

At first they thought he lost a stitch but it seems this is not the case. He may have banged his jaw into something in an effort to get rid of the cone. He ate on Thursday.

On Friday I could only coax him to eat a few bites, and those were clearly painful. The vet came over last night (they do house calls, which is wonderful!) and gave him a shot of Metacam to see if they could bring down the swelling (I know.

But if he lives long enough to have CRF issues, then we’ll deal with it then. Last panel showed his kidneys are fine.) Last night after the shot he ate a decent amount of the A/D, but this morning he’s turning up his nose at everything again.

He’s also currently taking Buprenorphine. He loves tuna, doesn’t care for chicken. The biggest issue is he really doesn’t like wet food, but because of his jaw he can’t have dry food for another few weeks.

The pain seems to be less if I food process everything, but then he doesn’t like it. I can tell he’s still hungry from the way he was begging for greenies, but wet food just isn’t interesting. I can syringe feed him to a limited degree, but it isn’t really a long term solution.

Any ideas for what might tempt him? (By the way, before anyone suggests putting him down, he is a generally healthy cat and even now has a good quality of life. As he recovers from the surgery he is drinking, cuddling and playing.

He just finds it too painful to eat.) posted by frumiousb to Pets & Animals (32 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

How can I help my cat with mouth pain?

The only effective treatment for dental pain is to address the cat’s underlying dental disease. While pain medication may help decrease pain levels for a short time, the pain will continue to recur until the underlying issue is addressed. address the cat’s underlying dental disease.”

What can I give my cat for mouth infection?

Oral rinses or gels may be of benefit. The goal of treatment is to manage pain and to decrease inflammation. Some cats will respond to routine dental cleanings under anesthesia and at home care like chlorhexidine rinses or gels.

How long does it take for a cat's mouth to heal?

Generally, it will take about 10 to 14 days for the gums to deal, and any sensible use of the gum flaps will help to increase your feline’s comfort throughout this time.

How do I know if my cat's mouth hurts?

Drooling..Decreased appetite..Vomiting..Swollen and bleeding gums..Bad breath.

I’m new to this forum and after two weeks of constant vet visits, I think I need to actually talk to people who really understand and love cats. My cat Bernard had a high temp and was just not right, after lots of prodding they found he had mouth ulcers. He was given an injection to last two weeks for secondary infection and metacam for pain relief. Just been back today as I’m not happy at all. He hasn’t eaten a thing and at the vets today they basically gave him a vit b12 injection and baytril and I’m to return Friday to decide his fate!! I feel quite upset at this and disgusted with the vet. I am sure if I can get him to eat, his body will be able to attempt to fight this virus??. He is really good with me and I am syringing him recovery food (watered down) little at a time and I’ll stay up all night if I have to. Has anybody had any experience with this type of problem before as I really could do with advice. Thank you in advance.

railwaycats Frequent Cat Chatter Posts: 11 Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:21 pm I’m new to this forum and after two weeks of constant vet visits, I think I need to actually talk to people who really understand and love cats. of cats in household: 1 Location: West Wales Post by Kay Mon Jul 27, 2015 5:20 pm

I would have thought yes and you need a firm diagnosis – don’t hesitate to ask to be referred to your nearest vet hospital if you aren’t satisfied with the answers you are getting railwaycats Frequent Cat Chatter Posts: 11 Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:21 pm Thank you Kay for getting back to me so quickly. railwaycats Frequent Cat Chatter Posts: 11 Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:21 pm Sadly I had to take Bernard to the emergency vet.

Bernard has since been diagnosed with FIV BUT he is doing great and will be home tomorrow with medication for the rest of his life (I think). I am pleased that I trusted my gut and didn’t stick with the same vet and indeed their baytril dose. of cats in household: 4 So pleased to see that Bernard is feeling better and has had a proper diagnosis so you know what your dealing with.

railwaycats Frequent Cat Chatter Posts: 11 Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:21 pm Thank you.

Stomatitis in cats is a chronic condition that results in severe inflammation of a cats mouth and gums. Cats of any age or breed can be affected. Stomatitis is an incredibly painful condition. Fortunately, most cats respond well to a combination of medical management, regular oral care, and near full-mouth or complete extraction dental surgery.

Periodontal disease results from the accumulation of plaque (bacteria) on and around the teeth, which causes inflammation involving the gums and tooth support structures. Your veterinarian will begin with an exam of your cat as well as basic bloodwork, such as a complete blood count(CBC) and chemistry panel to look for any underlying systematic disease.

Sometimes, a veterinarian may recommend submitting a small sample of tissue from the mouth for biopsy. Management and treatment of stomatitis can be challenging due to the cause not being fully understood. Stomatitis treatment will vary depending on the stage and severity of the condition and a cats response in an individual case.

Some cats will respond to routine dental cleanings under anesthesia and at home care like chlorhexidine rinses or gels. Tooth surfaces provide areas for bacteria to attach, removing the teeth can help control periodontal disease and minimize the bacteria that provoke the immune system in cats with stomatitis.

According to the Ryan Veterinary Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, “Periodontal disease is the most common disease seen in companion animals, which, when left untreated, may result in disease elsewhere in the body. Feline patients are often affected by resorptive lesions, which cause pain and decreased appetite.”

Proper diet combined with expert professional care will help your cat with feline stomatitis feel better quicker. Cats with LPS suffer great painthey feel like their mouths are on fire, according to Dr. Louise Murray, a board-certified veterinary internistand have difficulty eating because of the pain.

Appetites wane, and the animals lose weight and can die if the condition is not treated properly and promptly. The good news is that LPS is treatable and reversible with diet, nutrition, and regular professional care. However, as part of a treatment protocol, the vet may recommend a full mouth extraction of the cat‘s teeth.

Red gums Bad breath Excessive drooling Whining Sore throat Refusal of food Avoid feeding them soft or sticky foods, which cling to the teeth and encourage plaque formation. Many dry foods have high carbohydrate levels as they are formulated primarily from plant proteins and baked to produce the finished product.

The heat needed for baking robs nutrients from the food, and the chunks are so dry, they crumble in the mouth and stick to the teeth, thus exacerbating periodontal conditions. In general, canned cat foods provide higher percentages of high-quality protein and moisture and are recommended for treating LPS. Your personal veterinarian is more qualified to make a specific recommendation based on your cat‘s overall health and history.

Friskies Feline Dental Diet for Cats has a guaranteed analysis of crude protein of 28% and moisture of 10%. In addition, according to the package ingredients listing, the food is free from artificial colors or preservatives that might cause liver damage or trigger allergies. The following products for feline dental care diets have been awarded the Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) Seal of Acceptance:

Cat owners can feel confident in these proven methods to prevent and treat their pets. Telephone Interview, Dr. Louise Murray, Vice President of the ASPCA’s Bergh Memorial Animal Hospita l , 09/23/2010 It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional.

What Is Stomatitis?

Feline stomatitis is a severe, painful inflammation of a cat’s mouth and gums. Gingivitis is a medical term that refers to inflammation of the gums and is one of the earlier signs of dental disease. Stomatitis refers to a more generalized inflammation of the mucous membranes within the mouth. In most cases, the condition causes painful ulcers and lesions to form in the mouth; these ulcers can involve the lips, tongue, gums, and back of the throat.

Symptoms of Stomatitis in Cats

One of the most common symptoms is pain in cats with stomatitis is severe pain. This can manifest in a variety of ways. In some cases, a cat suffering with this condition may be in too much pain to open his or her mouth to eat. In other cases, due to the chronic pain, the cat may exhibit behavioral changes such as being withdrawn or irritable. Some cats may stop eating their dry food, due to it being too painful to chew and only eat canned food. This can often result in the cat being described as a picky eater when in fact, they have mouth pain.

How to Diagnose Stomatitis

If your cat is exhibiting any of the above symptoms, schedule an exam with your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will begin with an exam of your cat as well as basic bloodwork, such as a complete blood count(CBC) and chemistry panel to look for any underlying systematic disease. Your vet will may also recommend specific testing for underlying diseases such as FeLV and FIV.Examining the mouth of a cat with stomatitis can be difficult because the cat is reluctant to open his or her mouth due to pain. Your veterinarian may recommend sedation to facilitate a more complete and comfortable examination.The diagnosis is commonly based on clinical signs and physical examination findings. A dental examination and dental X-rays can help your veterinarian determine the extent of periodontal disease. Sometimes, a veterinarian may recommend submitting a small sample of tissue from the mouth for biopsy.

Stomatitis in Cats

According to the Ryan Veterinary Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, “Periodontal disease is the most common disease seen in companion animals, which, when left untreated, may result in disease elsewhere in the body. Feline patients are often affected by resorptive lesions, which cause pain and decreased appetite.”Resorptive lesions are just one complication of feline stomatitis, which is an inflammation of the mouth and gum line and also known as lymphocytic plasmacytic stomatitis (LPS).Cats with LPS suffer great pain—they feel like their mouths are on fire, according to Dr. Louise Murray, a board-certified veterinary internist—and have difficulty eating because of the pain.The inflammation is caused by the accumulation of plaque. Appetites wane, and the animals lose weight and can die if the condition is not treated properly and promptly. The good news is that LPS is treatable and reversible with diet, nutrition, and regular professional care. However, as part of a treatment protocol, the vet may recommend a full mouth extraction of the cat‘s teeth.If you notice any of the following symptoms in your cat, consult a veterinarian promptly:

Dry Food Exacerbates Gum Problems

Many dry foods have high carbohydrate levels as they are formulated primarily from plant proteins and baked to produce the finished product. The heat needed for baking robs nutrients from the food, and the chunks are so dry, they crumble in the mouth and stick to the teeth, thus exacerbating periodontal conditions.

Wet Food Is Better

In general, canned cat foods provide higher percentages of high-quality protein and moisture and are recommended for treating LPS. Wet foods do not stick to the teeth and are easier to consume, especially for cats with sore gums.

Smaller Meals Can Help

Another method that may ensure your cat gets enough nutrition is to feed smaller meals, spaced out throughout the day. Three to six tiny meals may be easier for your cat to handle than one or two larger meals. The food can be ground-up in a food processor or blender to make a thin consistency for the cat to lap up rather than chew.However, keep in mind that the above suggestions are somewhat general in nature. Your personal veterinarian is more qualified to make a specific recommendation based on your cat‘s overall health and history.

Why a Better Diet Helps

In the article “Veterinary Dentistry: Dental Care for Pets”, the author suggests Friskies Feline Dental Diet for Cats for pets with LPS.Friskies Feline Dental Diet for Cats has a guaranteed analysis of crude protein of 28% and moisture of 10%. In addition, according to the package ingredients listing, the food is free from artificial colors or preservatives that might cause liver damage or trigger allergies. It carries the VOHC Seal of Acceptance.The following products for feline dental care diets have been awarded theThe VOHC “certifies only that, upon application for the right to use the registered seal, the product met VOHC’s standards for effectiveness in retarding plaque and tartar when used as directed.”

Read More From Pethelpful

The information in this article should not be considered veterinarian advice. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, prescribe or cure any ailment. Always check with a veterinarian for treatment advice for cats and other animals or before following any advice in articles like the one you have just read.

Resources

Texas A&M University, College of Veterinary Medicine, accessed 02/22/2010:http://www.cvm.tamu.edu/vscs/Services/Dentistry/LPS.shtmlMatthew J. Ryan Veterinary Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, accessed 02/22/2010: http://www.vet.upenn.edu/Portals/0/media/Matthew_J_Ryan.pdfVeterinary Medical Teaching Hospital, “Veterinary Dentistry: Dental Care for Pets” Frank J. M. Verstraete, accessed 02/22/2010:Telephone Interview, Dr. Louise Murray, Vice President of the ASPCA’s Bergh Memorial Animal HospitaVeterinary Oral Health Council, accessed 02/23/2010: http://www.vohc.org/accepted_products.htm

Keep in Mind

This veterinary medical information is based on information provided during a telephone interview with a professional, qualified veterinarian. However, it is provided for educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. Always seek your veterinarian’s advice about your pet’s health.While this information is periodically researched and updated (under the guidance of veterinary input) in the attempt to be timely and factual, no guarantee is given the information is correct, complete, and/or up-to-date.Recommendations as to therapeutics, diagnostics and best standards of practice in the veterinary industry and/or opinions between professionals may differ or change as technologies and information changes. You should not use this article as your sole source of information on any matter of veterinary health or attempt to self-diagnose or treat your pets as the information herein may not be appropriate for your pet. The safest option for you and your pet is to rely on the advice of your veterinarian to diagnose and recommend the best treatment options.