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Dental work in older cat

(15 Posts)
TrickyTreeLou Sat 24-Jun-17 18:18:26

Took George to get his ear looked at today. He is 15 ish and hasn't been to the vets for 3 years as he hasn't been poorly and as largely an indoor cat now I don't have him vaccinated.

Vet gave him a thorough checking over and said he's in very good nick for his age. smile

Then looked at his teeth and said he needed dental extractions and she would get me a quote for that. Quote was £333 for the work, plus the options of a pre op blood test which was £99. shock

She showed me his gums at the back and they were red and looked sore. He has not showed any signs of discomfort and still eats too well.

When I got back my v experienced cat lady neighbour came and said to ask for antiobiotics for the redness and to not consider operating unless he shows sign of discomfort.

Just looking for advice really - wwyd. I'm shocked at how much it is, but in her words 'he has a few more years in him yet all being well', so he's absolutely worth the money if it's necessary.

halfmoonbay Sat 24-Jun-17 18:43:58

Not sure if this will help..... I have a dog (Yorkshire terrier) who is 12 years old but a lot smaller than a cat. She had dental work done almost a year ago, I wasn't aware of any serious issues and she didn't appear to be in any pain but her breath was horrendous. I was absolutely terrified of her having surgery because of her age but i booked her in - it was the best £500 I think I have ever spent, she is like a new dog, she had 13 teeth removed, the vet showed me some pictures taken during the procedure, my poor little dog had abscesses under her teeth, they were completely rotten - she must've been in agony! The smelly breath is vastly improved & she has a new lease of life.

JimmyChoosChimichanga Sat 24-Jun-17 18:47:18

Vet nurse here of 35 years and counting. Have it done. Cat mouths harbour bacteria and it would benefit him enormously as the bugs can harm the internal organs also. Animals are stoic too and don't show pain until it is extreme. Dental pain is awful so it would be a kindness.

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 25-Jun-17 07:24:58

I agree with Jimmy another common thing is after we do the dental in older cats who have kept eating, their owners regularly report that the cats are better than they have been for ages.
Honestly the antibiotics in this situation is like popping a sticking plaster on a a huge gaping wound.

IrritatedUser1960 Sun 25-Jun-17 07:33:30

If the vet said George needs dental work then he does and it's better to get it done now, it could be too late in a couple of years time and the poor old cat could be suffering.
My neighbour recently took her cat to have some extractions at 21 years old!! He was suffering with abscesses and in a lot of pain and he has a new lease of life completely now.

villainousbroodmare Sun 25-Jun-17 07:37:08

Do it. And don't skimp on the (possibly) optional elements: pre-anaesthetic bloods, iv fluids. Animals mask chronic pain and low-grade bacteraemia.

Ginnotgym Sun 25-Jun-17 07:41:37

Our cat has had to had all but her front 8 teeth out now, and she does really well with her food (even biscuits)

I think it's not the discomfort they have now, but wise to nip in the bud before it gets more serious and painful. Good luck to you both x

timtam23 Sun 25-Jun-17 09:47:48

I would have it done now while he is fit enough to have an anaesthetic, my old cat was fit & well at 15 but by 16 and a half he had too many risk factors for a non-urgent anaesthetic, so any chance of doing dental work had gone

cozietoesie Sun 25-Jun-17 12:19:41

I'd have it done now - as timtam said, while he's still fit enough for a GA. I'd also take the option for the blood to be tested.

stressystressy Sun 25-Jun-17 14:14:18

Get it done while he is in good condition and likely to bounce back with no issue. Cats are incredible actors, and won't show signs of pain until it is extreme. If your vet recommends the pre-op bloods get this done (knowing what potential complications they are dealing with will mean far less risks for your cat). If vet recommends fluids then do it. With all due respect to your cat lady neighbour, she is not a vet.

Our cat (a failed foster who we were told was three years old - turned out to be much older) ended up having severe complications under anaesthesia because things kept cropping up which is apparently very unusual to see in a young cat. The next time he needed anaesthetic for a dental we took all precautions (bloods and fluids) and he was remarkably full of beans when he returned home.

cozietoesie Sun 25-Jun-17 14:55:57

Seniorboy had a big dental at about 16. He didn't have specific bloods taken for the op but he'd just had them done a few weeks before (on general principle) and they were fine. He did have fluid support throughout the procedure - just something that his vet felt happier about because of his age. There was one back tooth that his vet 'saved' but if I'd have another run at it, I'd have told her to take that out as well. (Most of his teeth went, apart from his fangs.) When his immune system started getting .......variable at about 17/18, that remaining tooth caused problems - but it was too late to operate on it, really.

Having most of his teeth out seemed to make no difference to his ability to eat. He was certainly healthier and happier after the procedure.

TrickyTreeLou Sun 25-Jun-17 15:00:31

OK thank you all I will definitely have it done. I was given the option of 2 dates in early August which gives me 2 pay packets to fund it.

cozietoesie Sun 25-Jun-17 15:02:16

Good luck to the lad. Let us know how he gets on? smile

TrickyTreeLou Sun 25-Jun-17 15:24:09

Yes will do. The fluids came as part of the extra £99 package with the bloods.

I have his sister at home, Daisy, so once he's done I know I need to get her checked - suspect it'll be the same - ie in good nick but teeth need doing! So I'll aim to get her done in Autumn.

user1497453941 Sun 25-Jun-17 15:43:01

Our 9 year old cat had a similar issue last month. She was eating fine (overeating if allowed as always...) & had no outward issues but I happened to be looking in her mouth one day (really not sure why...) but noticed her gums were very red. Took her to the vet & was told she needed a dental scale & polish under anaesthetic & potentially some teeth out.

It was around the price you were quoted & we were told we had to do the bloods because older cats can have renal issues that can be made worse by the anaesthetic so it's important to know in advance so they can be given extra fluids etc.

She ended up needing 3/4 teeth out & had a week of antibiotics/painkillers. Took her a few days to work out how to chew with her missing teeth (lots of food getting stuck & her trying to hit herself in the face..) on a soft diet but she's fine now. She's a very placid cat but I can definitely see she's even more easy going after having the teeth out so it must have been bothering her without us realising.

Apparently according to the vet because she's an indoor cat (adopted last year & doesn't have any road sense so can't go out except on a lead), she doesn't chew on little animals bones to keep her dental hygiene up so we've been giving her Asda dental treats which are a spiky shape to try to help her few remaining teeth.

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