Understanding and Managing Cat Mouth Ulcers: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

icon September 22, 2023

Cats are known for their impeccable grooming habits and sharp, agile movements. However, even the most well-cared-for felines can develop health issues, one of which is mouth ulcers. Cat mouth ulcers can be painful and distressing for both the cat and its owner. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options for cat mouth ulcers to help you better understand and care for your feline companion.

What Are Cat Mouth Ulcers

Cat mouth ulcers, also known as stomatitis or oral ulcers, are painful sores that develop in a cat's mouth. These ulcers can occur on the gums, tongue, palate, and other soft tissues in the oral cavity. They are often characterized by redness, swelling, and open sores, making it uncomfortable for your cat to eat, groom itself, or even meow.

What Causes Ulcers in A Cat's Mouth

Understanding the underlying causes of cat mouth ulcers is essential for effective management and prevention. There are several potential causes, including:

1. Dental Issues: Poor dental hygiene can lead to gum disease and dental infections, which may result in mouth ulcers. Tartar buildup, tooth decay, and fractured teeth can cause irritation and infection in the mouth.

2. Infections: Bacterial, viral, or fungal infections can lead to oral ulcers. Common culprits include feline calicivirus, feline herpesvirus, and Candida species.

3. Allergies: Cats can develop allergies to certain foods, which may manifest as mouth ulcers. Allergic reactions can cause inflammation and irritation in the mouth.

4. Immune System Disorders: Autoimmune diseases, such as feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) and feline leukemia virus (FeLV), can weaken the immune system and make cats more susceptible to oral ulcers.

5. Chemical Irritants: Exposure to toxic substances or chemicals, such as household cleaners or certain plants, can lead to mouth ulcers if ingested or licked.

6. Systemic Diseases: Some systemic diseases, like kidney disease, diabetes, and gastrointestinal disorders, can manifest with oral symptoms, including ulcers.

7. Trauma: Accidental trauma to the mouth, such as biting on a hard object or being hit, can result in mouth ulcers.

8. Tumors: In rare cases, oral tumors can cause ulceration and discomfort.

Does Kidney Disease Cause Mouth Ulcers in Cats' Mouth

Yes, kidney disease can potentially cause mouth ulcers in a cat's mouth. Kidney disease can lead to changes in the cat's body chemistry and weaken the immune system, making them more susceptible to oral issues, including ulcers. However, mouth ulcers can also have various other causes, so it's crucial to consult a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan if you suspect your cat has mouth ulcers.

Cat Mouth Ulcer: Symptoms

Identifying the symptoms of mouth ulcers in cats is crucial for early intervention. Common signs and symptoms include:

  • Drooling: Excessive drooling is often an early sign of mouth discomfort in cats.
  • Pawing at the Mouth: Cats may paw at their mouths in an attempt to relieve pain or irritation.
  • Reduced Appetite: Cats with mouth ulcers may avoid eating or show a decreased appetite.
  • Weight Loss: Chronic mouth ulcers can lead to weight loss if the cat is unable to eat properly.
  • Bad Breath: Oral infections can result in foul-smelling breath.
  • Difficulty Swallowing: Cats with mouth ulcers may struggle to swallow food or water.
  • Red or Inflamed Gums: Inflamed or bleeding gums are common in cats with oral ulcers.
  • Visible Sores: You may be able to see the ulcers themselves when examining your cat's mouth. They appear as small, round, red or yellowish sores.

Diagnosing Cat Mouth Ulcers

If you suspect that your cat has mouth ulcers, it's essential to seek veterinary care promptly. Your veterinarian will perform a thorough examination and may recommend various diagnostic tests to determine the underlying cause. These tests may include:

1. Oral Examination: The veterinarian will visually inspect your cat's mouth to identify ulcers and assess their severity.

2. Blood Tests: Blood work can help identify underlying systemic diseases or infections.

3. Dental Examination: Dental X-rays may be necessary to evaluate the condition of your cat's teeth and gums.

4. Biopsy: In some cases, a biopsy of the ulcerated tissue may be required to rule out more serious conditions, such as oral cancer.

Do Cat Mouth Ulcers Go Away On Their Own

Cat mouth ulcers typically do not go away on their own. They often require veterinary intervention for diagnosis and treatment. Leaving them untreated can lead to pain, discomfort, and complications for your cat. It's essential to consult a veterinarian if you suspect your cat has mouth ulcers to determine the underlying cause and provide appropriate care.

Cat Mouth Ulcers: Treatment

The treatment of cat mouth ulcers depends on the underlying cause and the severity of the condition. Here are some common treatment options:

1. Dental Care: If dental issues are the cause of the ulcers, your veterinarian may recommend a dental cleaning and any necessary extractions or treatments.

Puainta® Dental Cleaning Powder for Dogs/ Cats:

Teeth Cleaning Powder, 30g

2. Medications: Depending on the diagnosis, your vet may prescribe antibiotics, antifungals, or antiviral drugs to treat infections. Anti-inflammatory medications, such as corticosteroids, may also be prescribed to reduce inflammation and pain.

Puainta® Metronidazole Tablets to Treat Stomatitis, Mouth Ulcer, Gingivitis, Periodontitis, Halitosis:

Puainta® Metronidazole Tablets to Treat Stomatitis, Mouth Ulcer, Gingivitis, Periodontitis, Halitosis

3. Pain Management: Pain relief is a crucial aspect of treatment. Your veterinarian may provide pain medications or recommend over-the-counter pain relief products suitable for cats.

4. Dietary Changes: If allergies or food sensitivities are suspected, your vet may suggest switching to a hypoallergenic diet.

5. Immune System Support: Cats with autoimmune diseases may require immune-suppressing medications or immune system support.

Immune System Supplement For Your Cat:

Sardine Oil for Dogs

6. Topical Treatments: For mild ulcers, topical treatments, such as antiseptic rinses, may help promote healing.

Puainta® Spray for Dog/ Cat Mouth Ulcers and Mouth Cleaning:

Puainta® Spray for Mouth Ulcer and Mouth Cleaning

7. Fluid Therapy: In severe cases, cats with mouth ulcers may require intravenous (IV) fluids to prevent dehydration and maintain nutrition.

8. Surgery: In cases of oral tumors or severe trauma, surgical intervention may be necessary.

How to Treat Cat Mouth Ulcers At Home

In addition to veterinary treatment, there are steps you can take at home to support your cat's recovery and comfort:

1. Soft Diet: Offer soft, wet food or blend dry kibble with water to make it easier for your cat to eat.

2. Hydration: Ensure your cat has access to fresh water at all times to prevent dehydration.

3. Medication Administration: Administer prescribed medications as directed by your veterinarian, and do not discontinue them prematurely.

4. Oral Hygiene: Brush your cat's teeth regularly to prevent future dental issues. Your vet can provide guidance on proper dental care.

5. Stress Reduction: Create a calm and stress-free environment for your cat to aid in recovery. Provide a quiet, comfortable place for them to rest.

6. Regular Follow-up: Schedule follow-up appointments with your veterinarian to monitor your cat's progress and adjust the treatment plan if needed.

Preventing Cat Mouth Ulcers

While not all cases of cat mouth ulcers can be prevented, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk:

1. Regular Dental Care: Brush your cat's teeth regularly and schedule routine dental check-ups with your veterinarian.

2. Balanced Diet: Feed your cat a balanced diet that supports dental and overall health.

3. Allergen Avoidance: If your cat has food allergies, work with your vet to identify and eliminate allergenic foods.

4. Vaccination: Ensure your cat is up-to-date on vaccinations to prevent viral infections like feline calicivirus and feline herpesvirus.

5. Toxin Awareness: Keep toxic substances out of reach and remove any potentially harmful plants from your home.

6. Stress Management: Minimize stressors in your cat's environment and provide mental stimulation through toys and play.



Cat mouth ulcers can be a painful and concerning condition, but with prompt veterinary care and appropriate treatment, most cats can recover and lead happy, healthy lives. If you suspect your cat has mouth ulcers, don't hesitate to consult your veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. By understanding the causes, symptoms, and treatment options for cat mouth ulcers, you can provide the best care and support for your feline friend, ensuring their comfort and well-being.

Leave A Comment
All comments are moderated before being published.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Join The Puainta

Become one of pet parents and get professional tips, immediate product info, updated promotions and discounts, and more surprises from us!