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Genetic Gingivitis

Discussion in 'Cat Health and Nutrition' started by punkpixie, Jan 22, 2021.


  1. punkpixie

    punkpixie PetForums Junior

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    Hello everyone,

    This might be more for those who have been in this position but also happy to hear from anyone else.

    Winter 2019 my 9 year old girl had her first tooth out (she went in for a clean but I waited too long to book it and by the time she went in she needed a tooth out). This winter Dec 2020 she went in for her yearly check up and I've been told she needs another out within the next few months. I asked what I could do to prevent this from continuously happening and the vet told me 'nothing, she has gingivitis, but she has no tartar.'

    At first I was confused as I read that gingivitis developed from plaque / tartar, so how could she have no tartar? Then looking through previous threads here I learnt it can be genetic which must be the case with my girl.

    My concern is that every year I'm going to be told she needs another tooth out. Being a senior not only is it more expensive to have the surgery (I live in London and I think it cost me circa £350) but it's also far more risky to her life. Do I want to be putting her under anaesthetic every year? How long would you wait to see how regular this becomes? I'm wondering whether at some point she should just have all her teeth out. But I can't bear the idea of her not being able to eat her fave meat sticks and dreamies. I can't bear the idea of not understanding why she no longer has teeth.

    Feeling pretty crummy and confused. It was also quite hard to converse properly with the vet what with us both standing outside in the dark, cold and rain with face masks on standing away from each other.

    Thanks in advance for any thoughts.

    Anna and Lola
     
  2. Callidora

    Callidora PetForums Member

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    Hi @punkpixie I’ve had two cats that had to have extractions. The first years ago, one of my boys that I adopted who hadn’t been looked after by his previous ‘owners’ and his teeth were in terrible shape.
    The second was my girl who had genetic gingivitis. We had no idea until she was about 9 years old. She had a full extraction of all her teeth and was perfectly fine after, she could still eat all her favourite treats.
    Cats manage absolutely fine after extraction, biscuits are not a problem in my experience. But to put your mind at rest, you can ask your vet for a phone appointment, this will give you chance to talk properly-I know what you mean at the moment that it’s difficult what with the weather being so grim, and having to talk through masks
     
  3. punkpixie

    punkpixie PetForums Junior

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    Thank you so much for sharing your experience. Having a phone call with the vet is a great idea. It's comforting to hear that they cope well.
     
  4. Periodontal health for cats (as for humans actually) is often a function of genetics. I would get an opinion from a specialist vet dentist as opposed to a general vet. It might be expensive now but it could save costly mistakes in the future. Are you in the UK?
     
  5. punkpixie

    punkpixie PetForums Junior

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    Yes I'm in London. I didn't realise there were specialist vet dentists so thanks for letting me know, I'll look into that. I'd rather deal with it up front than go through this ordeal every year not just because of the cost over time but also because of the risk of her being under anaesthetic too often. Yep bad teeth seem to be in my genes too so it makes sense that it could be the same in animals!
     
  6. There are indeed. Make sure anyone you see has dental radiography and possibly CT scanning equipment. It will give you the best imaging to understand what’s going on under the gumline.
    Here’s the list of specialists:

    https://findavet.rcvs.org.uk/find-a-vet-surgeon/by-specialist/dentistry/

    I suggest the RVC’s Queen Mother Hospital for Small Animals, just north of London. Good luck.
     
  7. punkpixie

    punkpixie PetForums Junior

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    Oh brilliant thanks for that as when I was looking it looked like the only near London was south and I'm north so that's really helpful.
     
  8. Yeah it looks like it’s far but actually when you put the postcode in Google Maps it’s actually a 45 min drive from North London. And you’re in good hands. Biggest vet teaching hospital in Europe, vets work in teams not in isolation which means other vets will spot mistakes colleagues might make. And not for profit. So you won’t get dysfunctional recommendations, let’s put it that way.
     
  9. OrientalSlave

    OrientalSlave Shunra Oriental Cats

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    You might also want to look for an iCatCare practise: https://catfriendlyclinic.org/cat-owners/what-you-should-be-looking-for/

    Equipment for dental procedures (cleaning teeth, tooth extraction etc.)
    For a Bronze level clinic, dental equipment and the ability to perform dental procedures is not required, but an arrangement must be in place with another local clinic to enable this when necessary, and those facilities must meet at least the Silver criteria outlined below.

    If dental procedures are performed within the clinic, facilities must meet the Silver criteria listed below.

    Additional criteria for Silver clinics:
    • A selection of appropriate equipment for performing manual teeth cleaning and other dental procedures on cats must be available.
    Additional criteria for Gold clinics:
    • Proper dental records and charts must be maintained for each patient.
    • There must be the ability to perform dental radiography (take X-rays of the teeth) to properly investigate tooth disease (I've emboldened this paragraph).
    • Equipment must be available to scale (clean) and polish teeth – high quality ultrasonic dental units are recommended.
    • To avoid risks of cross-contamination, dental procedures must never be performed in the operating theatre.
     
  10. OrientalSlave

    OrientalSlave Shunra Oriental Cats

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