Is Your Cat’s Bad Breath Saying Something?

How many times has your cat come to wake you up by rubbing his face against your face in the morning? Your cat looks adorable, but the odor coming from his mouth may make his affection less than welcome. Of course, you want to freshen your cat’s breath, but before you look into kitty breath mints, you might want to make an appointment with your veterinarian.

While post-tuna halitosis is no cause for concern, your cat’s breath should not stink consistently. If you notice unrelenting bad breath, your cat might be suffering from an undetected health issue, such as oral disease or diabetes. If you notice the following smells, have your cat examined by a vet:

Three Tips to Care for Your Aging Cat

Cats’ health needs change as they get older, but unlike aging humans, they can’t vocalize complaints about aching bones and stiff joints. It is important for cat owners to exercise extra vigilance when it comes to caring for an aging cat.

Follow these tips to help your feline friend age gracefully:

•    Stay current on vital vaccinations. As a cat grows older, it is essential to keep Cat Flu and Feline Infectious Enteritis in check. Though sometimes tempting to overlook, an older cat has a less efficient immune system and is thus more susceptible to disease. Most older cats will only require booster shots. However, if no vaccinations are on record for a cat, or if you are unsure, you can begin vaccinations at any age.

Three Caring Tips to Keep Your Aging Cat From Becoming a Sourpuss

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Cats’ health needs change as they get older, but unlike aging humans, they can’t vocalize complaints about aching bones and stiff joints. It is important for cat owners to exercise extra vigilance when it comes to caring for an aging cat.

Follow these tips to help your feline friend age gracefully:

* Stay current on vital vaccinations. As a cat grows older, it is essential to keep Cat Flu and Feline Infectious Enteritis in check. Though sometimes tempting to overlook, an older cat has a less efficient immune system and is thus more susceptible to disease. Most older cats will only require booster shots. However, if no vaccinations are on record for a cat, or if you are unsure, you can begin vaccinations at any age.

Vaccinations can be found for Cat Flu, Enteritis, FeLV, Chlamydia, FIP and Rabies in most areas. Consult your veterinarian for specific details.

* Don’t hold your breath on oral health care. According to the American Veterinary Dental Society, 70 percent of cats have some form of oral disease by age three — by age 10, it’s safe to presume that cats’ mouths can be rife with infection.

At-home oral care programs are ideal to help address the daily oral hygiene needs of cats. According to most veterinarians, brushing cats’ teeth on a regular basis is the best action to take to promote good oral health. For cats that are a little more temperamental about pet owners or vets touching their teeth, a simple and effective solution can be found using a new type of probiotics, called Teddy’s Pride Oral Care, that have been designed specifically for the oral care needs of cats and dogs (www.MyTeddysPride.com). These probiotics can be used in addition to brushing or as a stand-alone oral care routine.

* Eliminate pesky parasites. Fleas are the most common skin parasite of cats, leaving many cats with an itchy reaction. To prevent flea bites, use a flea spray or flea powder specifically formulated for cats. Internal parasites, like tapeworms and roundworms, distress older cats, particularly those which go outdoors. Most vets recommend that cats be treated for worms every three to six months — indoor-only cats may have a longer lapses between treatments. Always check with your vet for the best possible treatment program.

Bring Dog Grooming Costs to Heel

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Americans love their furry best friends, but when it comes to dogs, sparing no expense can get, well, expensive. Vet bills, grooming costs, kibble prices, kennel fees and training classes can make quite a dent in the family budget.

But with a little DIY bravado, dog owners can keep their lapdogs in luxury without going into debt. For example, many dog owners can perform basic grooming at home — and save up to $500 a year on canine shampoos and styles in the process. Here are some tips:

* Try clipping at home. This might take a little practice, but you’ll save time and money in the long run. Always start at the head and run the clippers in the direction of your dog’s fur. Be very careful not to cut skin. If you need to trim fur around your dog’s face, use scissors. Not all dogs need trimming, but all dogs benefit from brushing, which encourages healthy circulation and keeps fur mat-free.

* Keep that doggy smile healthy. If your dog’s kisses make you want to gag, it’s time to take action — bad breath is caused by destructive bacteria growing around the gum line. Veterinary cleanings can help, but prevention truly is the best medicine.

When it comes to your dog, prevention can be as simple as sprinkling oral care probiotics over kibble. Teddy’s Pride (www.MyTeddysPride.com), a probiotic supplement containing ProBiora3, a special blend of oral probiotics or “good bacteria,” can be administered through your dog’s food. Good bacteria leave little room for bad bacteria to grow, so they naturally improve breath. They also release low-levels of hydrogen peroxide, helping to whiten teeth.

* Trim nails. Use sharp clippers to cut nails, taking care not to cut through the quick — the area of the nail that contains nerves and blood vessels. Nails should be trimmed about once a month.

* Clean your dog’s ears. If you notice redness, head shaking, constant scratching or a bad odor coming from you dog’s ears, it’s time to schedule a vet visit — ear infections are painful and can lead to permanent hearing loss. Check your dog’s ears twice a month for signs of infection. Use a cotton ball with a little water or mineral oil to gently clean the underside of your dog’s ears. Never stick the cotton ball into the ear canal.

Puppy Love Without Doggie Breath

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Your dog loves to give you kisses, and while you appreciate the puppy love, you could do without the stinky breath. So, you switch your dog to dry food. You feed him dental biscuits. You even go through the messy process of brushing his teeth. And yet, you still have hold your breath every time he licks your face. What’s going on?

Believe it or not, your dog’s breath shouldn’t smell, and if it does, it’s time to think about your dog’s oral health.

Certain diseases, like diabetes or kidney disease, may cause bad breath in dogs. But most bad breath, or halitosis, occurs when bacteria infect the gums. If left unchecked, the bacteria can create gum disease or go through the gums into the bloodstream, thereby entering other parts of the body.

“Logically, improving the health of your pet’s teeth and gums will help eliminate the halitosis associated with bacterial infection,” says Dr. Jeffrey Hillman, D.M.D., Ph.D. and chief medical officer for Oragenics.

Eliminating bad breath -; and the harmful bacteria that cause it -; begins at home, with a consistent oral health program. But toothbrushing can be irksome for both pet and pet owner, and dental chews can’t reach every tooth surface. For this reason, Hillman, who has studied probiotics for 25 years, first at the Harvard-affiliated Forsyth Institute in Boston and then at the University of Florida, suggests that pet owners give their pets probiotics, or “good” bacteria.

The science behind probiotics is simple -; if your dog’s teeth are coated in good bacteria, there’s no room for bad bacteria to grow. “The good bacteria inhibit the growth of the damaging bad bacteria, leading to better breath,” explains Hillman.

Hillman created ProBiora3, a special blend of oral probiotics that replenish specific “good bacteria” in the mouth. These beneficial bacteria freshen breath and whiten teeth through the natural release of low-level hydrogen peroxide.

ProBiora3 is available to pets in a grooming aid called Teddy’s Pride. You simply sprinkle the probiotics on your pet’s food once daily. Because it’s easy to administer, you’ll have no problem sticking to the program. Teddy’s Pride won’t change the taste, texture or odor of your pet’s kibble — your dog will happily lap it up. And when he kisses you in appreciation, you won’t have to hold your breath or turn away.

For more information, visit www.ForTeddysPride.com.

Caring for Kitty’s Cheshire Cat Grin

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Cat owners are known for their devotion — but many have never given their cat’s teeth a second thought. No wonder that, according to the American Veterinary Dental Society, 70 percent of cats have gum disease by age three.

Cats rarely get cavities — their diets are very low in sugar — but they can develop many of the same health problems that occur in people, such as periodontal disease and gingivitis. Symptoms may include red, bleeding or sensitive gums and weight loss caused by the cat’s inability to eat. Bad breath, too, can herald more serious health problems. If a cat displays any of these symptoms, it’s time to visit the veterinarian.

While you should schedule dental check-ups with your veterinarian twice a year, taking care of your cat’s smile begins at home. Here are some tips:

– Brush your cat’s teeth. Frequent brushing is the best thing you can do for your cat’s pearly whites. Never use products intended for humans. Instead, choose a flavored cat toothpaste -; your cat will like fish or chicken — and a pet toothbrush. Gently introduce toothbrushing, first by letting your cat taste the toothpaste, then by gently stroking its canines to get it used to you touching its teeth.

It’s best to brush your cat’s teeth daily, but cleaning its teeth once or twice a week will go a long way in keeping your cat’s mouth healthy.

– Use oral probiotics. If your cat’s mouth could use some aesthetic (and odor) improvement, try putting probiotics in its food. Dr. Jeffrey D. Hillman, D.M.D.,

Ph.D. and chief medical officer for Oragenics, has studied oral probiotics for 25 years. He recently developed Teddy’s Pride (www.ForTeddysPride.com), an oral probiotic designed especially for pets. Probiotics, or “good” bacteria, crowd out the bacteria that cause bad breath, while also releasing low-level hydrogen peroxide to naturally whiten teeth.

– Watch what your cat eats. Chewing dry kibble can help break plaque off your cat’s teeth. You can purchase dental cat food or dental chews, but these can’t clean teeth completely, so only use them in conjunction with brushing. Try to avoid feeding your cat table scraps, which often contain more sugar than cat food and can contribute to plaque build-up and cavities.

For more information, visit www.ForTeddysPride.com.