Pale Gums, But Otherwise Normal

This forum is for cat lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your cat.


Purred: Thu Dec 18, '08 11:27pm PST 
The other day when I was checking my babies teeth I noticed that her gums were very pale.

I check her teeth and gums regularly because she has bad teeth. She had an infection in her upper canines (er.. are they called canines in cats?) that she got antiobiotics for and everything was fine afterward, though the two teeth did fall out. Looking closer today, from what she lets me see it's just the top near where those fangs would have been that's very pale. She won't let me open her mouth or anything, though.

I did some googling and got even more worried. She hasn't been acting any differently. She's been snuggling up in my room more than usual, but my room is the warmest in the house right now; everyone wants in here. I checked her nose and it was dry, but now its not (I woke her up to do all this; I think she momentarily hated me). She does drool a lot, I've always assumed it was the lack of teeth, because it started when the first fell out. I think she has been peeing more lately, but it's just a guess; I haven't noticed her drinking more. She's also been eating alright, though she's been stuck on dog food for a day or two (we're sorta snowed in right now).

She doesn't have any less energy and she's just as fiesty as usual.

Should I be overly concerned about the pale gums, or can a checkup wait a bit longer? Could it be the infection returning, or dehydration? Could it be from a change in temp. or something like that?
Money is tight, so a vet immediately isn't exactly an option. But if it's something that is potentially serious I'll get her in as soon as possible. As soon as I get a job she's gonna get a full checkup; that could be another month or two. If need be I'll try not to wait that long.


I'm the baby,- gotta love me!
Purred: Fri Dec 19, '08 12:31am PST 
Sounds like dehydration, at the very least. Cats tend to underdrink more often than not.

I am a lot more concerned about her eating dog food right now, even if it is an emergency. Essentially, that can lead to malnutrition, so there's that also.


Purred: Fri Dec 19, '08 9:15am PST 
Should I start keeping a water dish in my room while she's in there and see if it improves at all?

We're going to the store today regardless of the weather, so we'll be getting cat food when I get home from school. I've never seen this much snow since moving to the island. We weren't exactly prepared for it.


Don't breed or- buy when shelter- pets die
Purred: Fri Dec 19, '08 12:13pm PST 
Put a number of water bowls around the house. If there's something new a cat will usually go check it out. I have six water bowls around the house. Two of them always stay in the same spot and the rest get moved around every so often. My animals are raw fed and don't drink very often, but now with the dry winter air I've noticed some action at the bowls. One of the bowls is a big heavy marble thing that I float plastic toys in. The cats think it's fun to bat them around and lick the water off the toys and their paws and the ferrets like to snorkel and drag the toys out. Even if they're just licking the water off their paws it's something.

You could also boil a chicken breast or other boneless meat and offer the water once it's cooled down. That's pretty hard to resist. Then cut up the meat and feed that instead of the dog food. It's way better for her.

Edited by author Fri Dec 19, '08 12:14pm PST



Purred: Fri Dec 19, '08 9:10pm PST 
Pale gums could be a sign of anemia. Is your kitty's nose and paw pads pink? if you push on the paw pad and release it you should be able to observe how long it take the blood to return to the area. If it takes several seconds, your cat could be anemic. My kitty became anemic due to a blood loss problem after dental surgery, and her gums became ghastly white. She almost died from this anemia, so if you suspect your cat to be anemic, I suggest a trip to the vet pronto.


Purred: Sat Dec 20, '08 3:36pm PST 
We've only got on dish down right now. They used to love drinking out of the toilet, but since the two girls we have are getting older they've stopped doing that. So all we have is a metal bowl. I'll put some more water down, and keep some in my room so she can drink in here.

We couldn't find any boneless chicken that was affordable (well none my mother thought was affordable for the cat) but we did get chicken liver I think it is. Can I do the same with that; boil it and give her to water and the liver?

Also, I did the paw pad thing and it took 2-3 seconds to turn pink again. Is that too long?