Tooth extractions and odd mouth behavior

writingislove

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Oct 15, 2013
Messages
93
Purraise
40
Location
Idaho
Back in September, Winston (who is 10) had 12 teeth extracted (some were rotten, others due to FORL). Two of them were his top canines, which seemed to be a big change for him because they were so large they always poked out of his mouth.

Anyway, I contacted the vet a couple of times in the first month after his surgery with concerns that his tongue was always hanging out of his mouth. They checked him out twice over the course of a couple months and said everything was healing beautifully and that with those canines gone, his tongue would likely slip out pretty regularly for the rest of his life. Okay, cool.

Now it's been 5 months and he still has really odd mouth behavior. His tongue pokes out all the time as expected, but he always seems to be shifting his mouth around and keeping it open slightly as if he can't quite get comfortable. Once he relaxes or falls asleep, his mouth will close all the way. But when he's awake, he seems to be annoyed with his own mouth. From what I can tell, it looks like his bottom canines are poking into his upper gums and I'm not sure if that's why.

He still eats okay, although he struggles a bit with crunchy food. I give him wet food as well but he still goes for the crunchy food when it's out (for both cats).

Anyway, all of this is to say, has anyone else had this experience with a cat having odd mouth behavior that lasts for months after multiple extractions?
 

Maurey

Maine Coon Madness
Top Cat
Joined
Jan 21, 2021
Messages
1,587
Purraise
1,802
I can't comment on multiple extractions, but, ime, lack of canines shouldn't necessarily cause the tongue to slip out of the mouth. Juma was born without the buds/roots of the adult teeth of three of her canine teeth -- both top ones, and one of her bottom ones. At around 10 months, both of Jum's milk teeth fell out within a week of each other (a highly traumatic event for me, as it happened out of the blue!). She's never had the issue of her tongue falling out of her mouth -- the biggest problem she's had (other than a traumatic malocclusion due to losing teeth so young that has since been resolved, and that wouldn't apply to your boy) is that she had problems with food falling out of her mouth the first few weeks. I'd suggest getting a second opinion about everything with a trained veterinary dentist.

Now it's been 5 months and he still has really odd mouth behavior. His tongue pokes out all the time as expected, but he always seems to be shifting his mouth around and keeping it open slightly as if he can't quite get comfortable. Once he relaxes or falls asleep, his mouth will close all the way. But when he's awake, he seems to be annoyed with his own mouth. From what I can tell, it looks like his bottom canines are poking into his upper gums and I'm not sure if that's why.
This should be easy to check for, if he'll let you handle his mouth at all, that is. You'll most likely see irritation in spots of his gums where the canines would rest, if they *are* causing damage.
 
Last edited:

PushPurrCatPaws

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
May 22, 2015
Messages
9,995
Purraise
10,166
...
he always seems to be shifting his mouth around and keeping it open slightly as if he can't quite get comfortable. Once he relaxes or falls asleep, his mouth will close all the way. But when he's awake, he seems to be annoyed with his own mouth. From what I can tell, it looks like his bottom canines are poking into his upper gums and I'm not sure if that's why. ...
I'd recommend either another visit with the current vet, or else, seeing a vet specializing in animal dentistry. You should check out if he has indeed possibly 'hurt' his upper gums somehow and if he is showing signs of discomfort or pain from that.
 

mrsgreenjeens

Every Life Should Have Nine Cats
Staff Member
Advisor
Joined
Aug 13, 2009
Messages
15,651
Purraise
5,759
Location
Arizona
If he's missing his top canines but still has his bottom canines, they could be poking his upper lip. When the matching teeth (opper or bottom) are missing, it tends to cause mouth issues, alighment issues, etc. It's hard to know exactly what the problem is not knowing exactly which teeth were extracted, but one of my guys had two teeth extracted last fall, and he still has a difficult time chewing. I watch him with treats (he normally eats wet food) and his chewing is all off even though he healed up nicely. He had one tooth removed from the top right and one from the bottom left so he's off kilter.

I agree that possibly seeing an animal dentist might be the best thing.
 
Top