Dr Marie Menniti - Miss Cats Team

Dr. Marie Menniti's Veterinary Advice

About 80% of senior cats will have dental disease, and this can cause severe pain.

If your cat has smelly breath, changes in appetite, or change in food preference, you’ll need to book an appointment with a vet as soon as possible.

No diet will cure a cat’s bad teeth, and periodontitis is irreversible. However, the following tips will help you to find a diet to help your cat’s remaining teeth, or support a cat that hasn’t any teeth left.

1. Choose a diet with the VOHC seal

Not all dry foods help the teeth, but some clinical diets have specific technology built-in to the kibbles to support dental health. This can be accomplished either through the physical action of the kibble on the teeth or the inclusion of an ingredient which prevents tartar buildup.

Only kibbles meeting the standards set out by the Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) are effective in one of these ways. You can check the list of products that meet these standards here. Of course, tooth brushing is always the best way to maintain your kitty’s healthy smile!

2. Choose a diet with a high water content

Diets that have a high water content will have a soft texture. These types of diets tend to come in a can or a pouch and are suitable for cats that can’t chew hard kibbles.

Wet cat foods have the added benefit of improving water intake, which helps to maintain hydration status – a common problem in senior cats.

If your cat still struggles to chew the texture of a high moisture diet, you can add more water and mix into a slurry. She can lap it up instead and still get all the nutrients she needs!

3. Consider kibble shape and kibble size

If your cat is missing some teeth or finds it difficult to chew, a diet that uses a smaller kibble may be beneficial.

Some cats may find smaller kibbles easier to chew or may prefer to swallow kibbles. If you find that your cat is really struggling to chew or is getting tummy upsets from swallowing kibbles whole, you can soak the kibbles in warm water before serving.

Remember to check in with your vet if you notice that your cat develops a sudden mouth sensitivity.

4. Consider your cat’s energy needs

If you find your cat becomes less interested in eating, choose a diet that has more calories per cup/pouch. That way she’ll be able to match her daily needs with fewer bites. However, take care that your cat doesn’t become overweight with a high calorie food, especially if they’re exercising less.

Your veterinarian can determine how much to feed per day to prevent overeating.

What is the Best Food for Older Cats with Bad Teeth?

IMAGE RECOMMENDED PRODUCTSPRODUCT FEATURES
  • Type: Dry food
  • Calories: 331 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 29%
  • Type: Dry food
  • Calories: 294 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 27%
  • Type: Wet food
  • Calories: 91 kcal/can
  • Protein: 45%
  • Type: Dry food
  • Calories: 312 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 34%
  • Type: Wet food
  • Calories: 176 kcal/5.5 oz can
  • Protein: 36%

Older Cats with Bad Teeth Cat Food Reviews

Hill's Science Diet Adult Oral Care Dry Cat Food for Older Cats with Bad Teeth

TOP 5 INGREDIENTS PRICE FEATURES
TOP 5 INGREDIENTS
  1. Chicken
  2. Brown Rice
  3. Corn Gluten Meal
  4. Chicken Fat
  5. Powdered Cellulose
PRICE
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FEATURES
  • Type: Dry food
  • Calories: 331 kcal/cup
  • Lifestage: Adult
NUTRITION
Fat
17.5%
17.5%
Protein
29%
29%
Fiber
10%
10%
REVIEW

Hill's Science Diet Adult Oral Care Dry Cat Food for Older Cats with Bad Teeth Review

This formula from Hill’s is the best cat food for older cats with bad teeth. It’s specifically designed for aging kitties and the most common dental problems they face. It uses a unique interlocking fiber technology to clean your cat’s teeth, brushing away tartar and plaque as they chew. It also freshens their breath in the process.

This limited ingredient formula is made without any artificial flavors or preservatives. The all-natural ingredients are full of vitamins and antioxidants to keep your older cat feeling energetic and healthy. In particular, it contains vitamins C, E, and A, as well as omega-3 fatty acids to keep your cat’s coat soft and shiny.

Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Dental Dry Cat Food for Older Cats with Bad Teeth

TOP 5 INGREDIENTS PRICE FEATURES
TOP 5 INGREDIENTS
  1. Chicken By-Product Meal
  2. Brewers Rice
  3. Corn
  4. Brown Rice
  5. Corn Gluten Meal
PRICE
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FEATURES
  • Type: Dry food
  • Calories: 294 kcal/cup
  • Lifestage: Adult
NUTRITION
Fat
13%
13%
Protein
27%
27%
Fiber
7.7%
7.7%
REVIEW

Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Dental Dry Cat Food for Older Cats with Bad Teeth Review

The Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Dental formula is an exceptional quality cat food designed for dental health. If you’re looking for the best cat food for senior cats with bad teeth, this is an excellent option. It has a unique shape and texture that is easy for cats to chew, but also removes plaque and tartar in the process.

This cat food is also enhanced with sodium tripolyphosphate. This compound binds salivary calcium, which prevents tartar from building up over time. Not only does this food clean your cat’s teeth while they’re eating, but it can actually help to prevent future issues. This diet is also primed to support your cat’s entire body, with an excellent blend of vitamins and minerals.

Purina Pro Plan Focus Classic Salmon & Tuna Wet Food for Older Cats with Bad Teeth

TOP 5 INGREDIENTS PRICE FEATURES
TOP 5 INGREDIENTS
  1. Salmon
  2. Liver
  3. Water Sufficient for Processing
  4. Meat By-Products
  5. Fish
  6. Chicken
PRICE
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FEATURES
  • Type: Wet food
  • Calories: 91 kcal/can
  • Lifestage: Senior
NUTRITION
Fat
27%
27%
Protein
45%
45%
Fiber
6.82%
6.82%
REVIEW

Purina Pro Plan Focus Classic Salmon & Tuna Wet Food for Older Cats with Bad Teeth Review

If your cat prefers a wet food option designed with dental health in mind, this option from Purina Pro Plan is an excellent choice. It has a very high moisture content and is formulated specifically for older cats and their unique needs. Since it has such a high water content, this formula is easy for cats to chew, even if they’re struggling with dental problems.

This formula is made with fresh salmon and tuna, which gives it a very enticing taste for your cat. It’s also full of protein and is enhanced with essential vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. This includes taurine, which is essential for your cat’s eyes and heart health as they get older. On a dry matter basis, this food contains 45 percent protein and 27 percent fat. It also doesn’t contain any grains and is easy for your cat to digest.

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets DH Dental Health Formula Dry Cat Food

TOP 5 INGREDIENTS PRICE FEATURES
TOP 5 INGREDIENTS
  1. Ground Yellow Corn
  2. Poultry By-Product Meal
  3. Corn Gluten Meal
  4. Animal Liver Flavor
  5. Animal Fat Preserved With Mixed-Tocopherols
PRICE
VIEW LATEST PRICE →
FEATURES
  • Type: Dry food
  • Calories: 312 kcal/cup
  • Lifestage: Adult
NUTRITION
Fat
12%
12%
Protein
34%
34%
Fiber
6%
6%
REVIEW

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets DH Dental Health Formula Dry Cat Food Review

The Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets DH Formula is designed specifically for cats that need dental support. It is a dry cat food with a unique texture that buffs away tartar and plaque as your cat chews, which can help to prevent ongoing problems. The crunchy texture also makes it very appealing for your cat.

This formula uses high-quality sources of protein to give your cat the energy that they need each day. It is also fortified with extra vitamins and minerals that your cat needs for healthy bones, muscles, and internal organs, such as taurine. Overall, it is a balanced option that is excellent for cats that need extra dental support.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Chicken Recipe Wet Food for Older Cats with Bad Teeth

TOP 5 INGREDIENTS PRICE FEATURES
TOP 5 INGREDIENTS
  1. Chicken
  2. Chicken Broth
  3. Chicken Liver
  4. Potatoes
  5. Pea Flour
PRICE
VIEW LATEST PRICE →
FEATURES
  • Type: Wet food
  • Calories: 176 kcal/5.5 oz can
  • Lifestage: Senior
NUTRITION
Fat
25%
25%
Protein
36%
36%
Fiber
9%
9%
REVIEW

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Chicken Recipe Wet Food for Older Cats with Bad Teeth Review

The Blue Buffalo Wilderness Chicken Recipe is a high-quality wet food option for older cats that struggle with dental problems. This high moisture formula has an excellent balance of 36 percent protein and 25 percent fat on a dry matter basis. It’s made with fresh chicken and is fortified with fresh fruits and vegetables for even more nutritional value. The fresh ingredients create an appealing flavor and a texture that is easy for your cat to chew.

Additionally, this recipe is fortified with DHA and taurine, two essential ingredients that your cat needs in their diet as they get older. They support your cat’s brain, heart, and eye health. Finally, this limited ingredient formula does not contain any grain, gluten, corn, wheat, soy, or any artificial preservatives that could irritate your older cat’s sensitive stomach.

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