We’ve all heard the saying: “Don’t get your hopes up, the cat has no bones.”
Well, cat owners may have to do without a lot of dental floss for the foreseeable future, but not everyone wants to put down the mouse and keyboard.
In fact, some are already starting to think about the possibility of removing cat dental flaps altogether.
We’ve talked with a few cat owners who’re already exploring the idea.
“I just don’t see how this will be sustainable,” said Catie, a cat lover from Australia who lives with her cat in a small apartment in her hometown.
“It’s definitely going to cost me money, it’s going to affect my health and I’m not sure how it will be beneficial.”
Catie has been taking her cat to the dentist three times in the past three years for minor issues that have been caused by dental problems.
“There’s no way I’m going to be able to keep doing it.”
It wasn’t until Catie started seeing other cat owners that she started considering alternatives.
“My cat’s not even the main focus, he’s just a side-effect of my dental issues,” she said.
“For someone who wants to be healthy, it might be better to avoid dental flushing altogether, but for someone who’s trying to get their dental care in good shape and doesn’t want to waste their money on the dental fluffs, I don’t think it will work for them.”
Some people have had similar experiences with cat dental hygiene.
“In my experience with cats, they tend to not really need the dental products,” said Lisa, a dental hygienist from Australia.
“They’re more likely to go with the natural thing.”
Lisa is currently working on a dental health plan that will be funded by the charity Shearwater.
“Most of the dental care I do for my clients is done with oral products, and I have a very small patient population,” she explained.
“The best thing I can do for them is use natural products.
But I have to keep using natural products and be careful to not use things that could be harmful to my cats.”
With cat dental care a popular topic on cat forums, it seems that some people have been reluctant to go ahead with the plan to stop using the floss.
Cat owners, especially those with young children, are starting to feel the pinch.
“As much as I love my cats, I’m still in awe that they are the most popular pets on the planet,” said Stephanie, a single mother from New York City.
“With all the dental treatments they have, I can see how expensive it is for them, but I also want to do the best I can for my family.”
Stephanie’s husband, John, is a dentist, but they have a little more time off work and the money isn’t as good as when they were at work.
“If they had dental care on the side, I could get through the day without having to have any dental care,” he said.
With the cost of dental care for pets rising rapidly, it appears that the future of cat dental treatment may be looking bleak for some.
“Cat owners are now starting to realise that it’s not just about dental fluff,” said John.
“Even with the fluff, it doesn’t necessarily keep them healthy, and that’s why some people are going back to using the dental product.”
If you or anyone you know needs help, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14.
This article was originally published on Wired.com