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Pet Dental Health Warning Signs

February 1, 2021

February is Pet Dental Health Month! This is one area that is often overlooked, even by the most loving and thoughtful pet owners. Just like people, our animal companions can develop a variety of painful issues with their teeth. However, your four-legged friend can’t tell you what’s wrong, so it’s important for you to know what to look for. A local Louisville, KY vet lists a few warning signs to look for in this article.

Dribbling Food

Dental issues can make it hard to eat and chew. You may notice your pet eating less, chewing on one side of their mouth, preferring softer foods, or dribbling food out of their mouth.


Excessive drool can be a sign of dental trouble. Ropy or bloody drool is also a red flag. Any type of drooling can be an indication of dental issues with kitties, as most cats don’t really drool much if at all.


Visible swelling is often a sign of infection. Given the proximity to the brain, this can be very dangerous!

Bleeding Gums

Bleeding gums are another indication that something is wrong. You may see red streaks on your pet’s toys, dishes, or bedding.

Bad Breath

Your animal companion may never have minty-fresh breath, but those affectionate smooches and nose boops shouldn’t make you gag, either. (Note: bad breath can be indicative of many different medical issues, so this is always a sign that you should have your furry buddy checked out.)

Uncharacteristic Behavior

Pets all have their own personalities, and some are just naturally, well, a bit cranky. However, if your furry friend is usually sweet, but lately has been acting morose or grouchy, there could be something going on. Withdrawal and/or unusual vocalizations are also warning signs.

Tartar Buildup

If your furry friend has unsightly gunk built up on their teeth, there’s a good chance that they have gum disease. This is very concerning, as gum disease has been linked to some serious medical problems, such as heart trouble.

Reduced Interest In Play

Pets play with their mouths, so it stands to reason that dental issues can put a damper on their shenanigans. If your animal companion’s favorite toys are gathering dust, dental issues could be to blame.

Do you know or suspect that your beloved pet has dental issues? Contact us, your local Louisville, KY veterinary clinic, right away!