Kitten Teething Toys: Overview and 4 PERFECT Picks

Posted by Jun 14, 2017 |

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Author Amira

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I’m Amira, founder and editor at Cattention.

This website is dedicated to share useful but entertaining information and help You understand Your cat’s actions, behavior and needs.

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Have you got yourself an adorable little kitten and just found that she is chewing on everything around her? Don’t be surprised! Just like other mammals that grow in different sets of teeth, your kitten will also go through this period.

Help your kitty out by giving her kitten teething toys, before she seeks out unwanted things to chew on. However, there are a lot of them available in the market. Which one is good for your kitten?

In this article, there are 4 excellent teething toys for your kitten that have everything a kitten would want in a toy. Let’s take a look:

Petstages Dental Health Chew Toys

Magic Coat Cat Tearless Shampoo

Helps the teething process along

Improves dental hygiene

Lightweight and durable

Filled with catnip for perfect fun

Petstages Catnip Plaque Away Pretzel

Earthbath All Natural Pet Shampoo

Eases the unpleasant teething experience

Promotes the kitten’s dental health

Tiny, sturdy and durable

Filled with catnip, ideal teething toy

KONG Cat Wubba Mouse, Cat Toy

Top Performance Fresh Pet Shampoo

Redirects kittens’ attention from teething

Encourages active play for a long time

Cute characters, rattling, crinkling noise

Filled with catnip for endless fun

Petstages Fresh Breath Mint Stick

Oster Oatmeal Naturals Cat Shampoo

Soothes experience, stimulates sores gums

Removes tartar, freshens breath

Durable, lightweight, good size

Filled with mint, fun to play with

Kittens do go through teething as well

Just like for humans, teething is a natural part of kittens’ lives as well, in which the kittens’ teeth sequentially appear by emerging through the gums.

Also, just like us, cats are diphyodont, during their lives they develop two sets of teeth which will erupt in different growth stages.

While newborn kittens are toothless, they start developing their first set of teeth when they reach two to three weeks of age, and by the time they are about two months old, they will have all the 26 deciduous teeth erupted.

However, these teeth are not permanent and start falling out at the age of three to four months. This is the time when the second set of teeth: the permanent, adult teeth start growing in.

The kitten teething process is complete when all the 30 permanent teeth are in place, which typically ends when the kittens are about six to seven months old.

As you can see, the teething process is relatively rapid in kittens and consists of two stages. The first period passes relatively unnoticed. However, when the second set of teeth breaks through the gums, you may notice the following teething symptoms:

  • Sore gums and lose or missing teeth
  • Strange behavior like biting, hissing or whining
  • Bad breath and drooling
  • Loss of appetite
  • Chewing

Even though kittens go through two stages of teething, we, cat owners, usually have to deal only with the second one, as this seems to be the time when these behaviors are mostly present. How to cope with it? One of the best things you can do is to provide your kitten teething toys.

Why are kitten teething toys necessary?

When you have a teething kitten, it seems quite obvious to give her – as the attribute suggests – kitten teething toys. But why exactly do you need one? Here are the reasons why teething toys might be necessary for your kitten:

  1. To soothe unpleasant experience

While the teething process usually goes fairly smoothly, for some kittens it can be a quite stressful and unpleasant experience. As the tooth eruption is taking place, the kittens’ gums usually become sore or swollen. Also, as the new, permanent teeth develop and grow, they weaken the baby teeth’s roots making them loose and eventually fall out.

As this happens, teething kittens tend to nibble, bite and chew on things that they can find for relief to get through this uncomfortable process. Giving your kitten a teething toy to chew on can help her ease the discomfort, relieve the pain and can also help her teeth to break through the gums.

  1. To avoid unwanted accidents

To soothe their discomfort and relief their pain, teething kittens may seek out dangerous objects to chew on if there are no proper alternatives and appropriate toys for them to use. Electrical wires and sharp things (like needles or knives) seem to be some of their favorite chew items. However, chewing on these things can put your cat at risk, from minor shock to death.

Offering your kitten appropriate teething toys will prevent her from nibbling on electrical cords and chewing and swallowing things that may harm her. This will – in return – avoid the risk of electric shock or other serious problems.

  1. To protect your belongings

As kittens teethe, they go through a chewing phase to find relief for their itchy, irritating gums and loose teeth. During this time, you should expect a lot of chewing on various objects like toys, shoes, clothes, upholstery, furniture, or anything that could be appealing. You may also find your kitten getting more biter – biting on hands, fingers, legs, and toes.

Providing your kitten appropriate teething toys to chew on will direct her chewing towards acceptable items, and will stop her chewing on things you don’t want her to. This will help prevent the damage to your belongings as well as yourself.

  1. To set mind at rest

During teething, kittens may display strange behavior patterns as the process can be uncomfortable and irritating. As a result of oral discomfort, they can easily become restless and irritable and can even show a bit of aggression. Some cats may also start behaving oddly like hissing, rubbing their gums on hard surfaces, or paw at their mouth.

Consider buying teething toys for your kitten to keep her calm during this sensitive period and to set her mind at rest when she becomes irritated or aggressive.

  1. To teach good behavior

Kittens aren’t born knowing how to play or what to play with. They need to learn these skills. Without proper training, their play will involve a lot of biting and chewing on unwanted items, and ignoring this behavior can cause this to continue past the teething stage as well, into the cats’ adult lives. While this doesn’t seem to be a big issue when they are still kittens, later on, when they have bigger, stronger teeth and they happen to bite, that could really hurt and even cause infections.

However, it is not the biting we need to stop as it is an important part of kittens’ development. So instead of keeping your kitten from biting and chewing things, provide her kitten teething toys whenever she starts to nibble. It will not only help your cat to learn about the process of chewing with her new teeth, but will also teach her what is okay to chew, and what is not. If she learns these things as a kitten, there is only a little or no chance at all for and unwanted, inappropriate biting behavior as an adult.

  1. To prevent boredom and promote bonding

Since kittens get bored easily, they start chewing on different things out of boredom, so they need lots of play times. Also, they will be teething on and off during this stage which will even increase the strong need to bite.

Giving your kitten teething toys will not only direct her to chew on acceptable items rather than unwanted things (like electrical cords, sharp objects, your belongings, etc.) but will also have some benefits. Play relieves boredom, reinforces social bonds, and provides vital mental stimulation.

All in all, as you can see, there are a great variety of reasons your kitten would need a special teething toy. Offer her a variety of them to soothe her unpleasant experience, to set her mind at rest, to avoid unwanted accidents, to protect your belongings, to teach good behavior and last but not least, to prevent boredom and promote bonding.

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What to know about kitten teething toys?

Chewing is considered as normal behavior for teething kittens as they often have the urge to chew on things due to their itchy, irritating gums and loose teeth. While they are trying to find comfort in this action, they might start to chew on things we definitely don’t want them to. Therefore, it is important that you provide your cat appropriate kitten teething toys specifically made for teething kittens.

There are various teething toys available in the market differing in texture, material, shape, and size.

  • Most of them are made of rubber or soft plastic as these firmer teething toys are the ones that can provide relief while exercising the jaw muscles.
  • Toys that are made of wool or other type of fabric can be very soothing to the teething kitten.
  • Nylon-based teething toys are soft enough for kittens to chew on without scraping the gums, irritating loose teeth or hurting the mouth.
  • Some kitten teething toys are designed to be put in the freezer which will then ease the discomfort of emerging teeth and tender, sore gums.

While all of these textures and materials can be fine for a teething kitten, there are also some other things to consider:

  1. The teething toy has to be high quality and long lasting to stand up to constant play.
  2. It also should be large and sturdy enough. This way our cat will not be able to bite off any piece of the toy or swallow the whole things so we can avoid choking risks and other dangers.
  3. On the other hand, try to avoid too hard teething toys as they can easily scrape the sensitive gums and damage the teeth. Instead, go for a softer one that can help the shedding process along.
  4. Also, avoid toys that have excessive decorations (like feathers or buttons) that could easily be swallowed.
  5. Last but not least, make sure that the product is non-toxic.

When selecting a teething toy, keep these things in mind along with the fact that most kittens like substances that let them sink their teeth in and stimulate their gums. However, some may prefer one toy over another depending on the teething stage. For this very reason, it is wise to provide our kittens more different teething toys.

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What to give your teething kitten to chew on?

There are numerous of teething toys available in pet stores, veterinarian offices or even online. If you are overwhelmed by the variety of toys, here are the top 4 picks that have everything a kitten would want in a teething toy.

Petstages Dental Health Cat Chew Toys

This kitten teething toy by Petstages is the very best among others on this list.

It is not only a simple teething toy for your kitten but also a dental chew. It helps the teething process along by massaging the sore gums as well as it can achieve significant improvement in your kitten’s dental hygiene by helping to remove tartar and to clean the kitten’s teeth.

This product is absolutely durable as it has a unique netted shell which is not going to unravel no matter how hard your kitten chews. As a bonus, it is lightweight and filled with catnip which will make this item a real, perfect fun for your kitten.

Helps the teething process

Improves dental hygiene

Lightweight and durable

Filled with catnip

Perfect fun

Petstages Catnip Plaque Away Pretzel

This Pretzel toy (also by Petstages) is another excellent choice for a teething kitten.

Just like the previous product, this pretzel-shaped toy can also ease the discomfort by soothing the sore gums while the netting around the toy can promote dental health by keeping the kitten’s teeth clean and tartar-free.

The product is quite tiny, though it is very sturdy (sturdier than most cat toys) and durable thanks to its innovative design. It is also filled with catnip which will definitely keep your little kitten’s attention on playing. With all these features, this teething toy is an absolutely ideal chew item for your teething kitten.

Eases the unpleasant experience

Promotes dental health

Tiny, sturdy and durable

Filled with catnip

Ideal chew toy for teething kittens

KONG Cat Wubba Mouse, Cat Toy

You cannot go wrong with this very popular kitten teething toy from KONG which comes in different cute characters from mouse to bunny, crab or even octopus.

This toy has been proven to be amazing for redirecting kittens’ attention from their sore mouth. Because of its crinkly extra-long tails and rattling noise, it is a perfect toy to batting, carrying and kicking around the house. Additionally, the catnip filling distracts kittens from chewing other objects and encourages active play for a long time.

This rattling teething toy with crinkly tails makes playtime an endless fun not only for kittens but for cats of all ages as well.

Top Performance Fresh Pet Shampoo

Redirects kittens’ attention from teething

Encourages active play

Cute characters, rattling, crinkling noise

Filled with catnip

Endless fun for kittens and cats

Petstages Fresh Breath Mint Stick

Last but not least, this Mint Stick teething toy by Petstages also deserves to be on this list because of several reasons.

First of all, this product is quite similar to the first two items because of its netting around the toy which helps the teething process by stimulating the gums and also helps to remove the soft tartar from the teeth.

The minty scent not only appeals to most cats but also freshens the breath as they chew. On the other hand, the toy is long lasting because of the simple but unique netted design which will not unravel even if used for longer period.

The toy’s light weight, good size, and crinkly ends make this product easy to carry and fun to play with.

Oster Oatmeal Naturals Cat Shampoo

Soothes experience, stimulates sores gums

Removes tartar, freshens breath

Durable, lightweight, good size

Filled with mint

Fun to play with

Alternatives

While many kittens will play with whatever we give them, there are others that can be quite picky. However, do not worry if your kitten belongs to this category. If using the above mentioned kitten teething toys doesn’t do the trick, there are other options you can go for:

  • Frozen toys: If your kitten seems disinterested in teething toys, try to freeze them in the fridge (only those that can be chilled). This can bring some comfort for the sore gums and for the growing teeth.
  • Washcloth: As an alternative, you can do the same with a washcloth or towel. Soak it in water and freeze it. This can also help ease the pain of teething.
  • Blanket: Some kittens also find relief from chewing on things that are made of wool or other type of fabric so even wool blanket can be soothing for a teething kitten.
  • Cardboard box: Cardboard can be an excellent, cheap option as well. Offer your kitten a cardboard box to let her relieve the pressure off the sore gums.
  • Catnip: If your kitten still seems disinterested in any of these chewing objects, try rubbing catnip on them to stimulate her interest.
  • Cat grass: Your teething kitten may also enjoy chewing on cat grass as its soft and cool texture can soothe her gums and can provide some relief through chewing. Select a grass that is safe for cats, such as the common oat, barley, and wheatgrass. You can also opt for cat-friendly greenery, like thyme, sage or parsley. Here are some of my recommendations:

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SmartCat Kitty’s Garden

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Petlinks Nibble-Licious Cat Grass

Oster Oatmeal Naturals Cat Shampoo

Tips for using kitten teething toys

Offering appropriate toys for our teething kittens to chew on is one thing we, cat owners, need to do. However, it is not enough. We also need to keep few rules in mind when using these teething toys.

  1. Know the play time

A play session with your kitten needs to be short. It can take as little as some minutes for a kitten to be satisfied with playing. Encourage only 5-10 minutes game and do it at least twice a day. Also, keep in mind that cats prefer to play early morning and late evening, and it is best to play before meal rather than after it.

  1. Keep a variety of teething toys

Since cats can get bored easily with their games, aim to get a variety of the teething toys to motivate your kitten. However, do not give her all at once. Rotate the toys between the sessions and do not forget to put them away after each play time. This way they will seem fresh and new for your kitten any time you pull them out.

  1. Encourage your kitten to chew on the appropriate teething toys by keeping them readily available

As kittens start teething, they begin to chew on anything and everything. Keep the teething toys always handy and encourage your kitten to chew on them any time she starts nibbling on things. This way she can learn to play with the toy instead of unwanted items.

  1. Use teasers

While teaser toys, like strings or feathers, are not suitable for your teething kitten to chew on, you can still use them to get her playing. This can help to distract her from the unpleasant experience the teething process causes, and will also prevent her from chewing on inappropriate items.

  1. Do not force

Take it easy on your kitten when it comes to playing. Once your kitten stops playing don’t force it any more. Also, do not wake her up just to play. It is always best to let her decide what she’d like to do and what she wouldn’t. Never force your kitten to do anything she doesn’t want to or you may aggravate her to the point where she becomes aggressive.

  1. Watch out for dangerous objects and supervise your kitten

Curious little kittens will play with anything they find. Even if you provide teething toys to play, your kitten can easily get distracted. Do not let your kitten chew on inappropriate items, keep the dangerous objects out of reach and supervise her while playing.

  1. Do not play roughly

Be considerate about your kitten’s sensitive, painful mouth, and do not encourage her to play roughly during playtime. Also, do not pull hard on toys that are in her mouth and stop any play if you notice that it hurts her. Your kitten can scrape her sore gums easily when playing so keep rough play to a minimum.

  1. Do not let your kitten bite you

Since kittens have the urge to chew on various things, it can be tempting for them to bite their owners, including their fingers or toes. During playtime, keep your hands away from your kitten’s mouth and don’t let her bite you. Otherwise, you might create this habit in her, and what may seem cute while she is a kitten, it can easily become a pain when she becomes older and her teeth are stronger and bigger.

  1. Do not punish

Never punish your cat. Negative reinforcement can create fear and distrust, and can easily destroy the relationship between you two. Instead of punishing, just stop playing altogether. This will teach your kitten that doing bad things will have consequences and will learn not to do them.

  1. Be consistent and positive

Whatever you do or teach your kitten, it is important that you use positive reinforcement and be consistent. While playing, praise and pet her to keep her interested. Reward her in a positive manner and never punish. Be consistent and patient, and sooner or later your kitten will understand that only certain things are appropriate for chewing.

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Other useful kitten teething tips

The teething process usually goes fairly smoothly and poses little to no difficulty for most kittens. However, a few of them may experience it as a quite stressful experience with some discomfort.

As each kitten is different, each of them will cope with it in her own way.  While for some it is enough to be provided with teething toys, there can be some others that might require different methods.

Here are some additional things (beside teething toys) that you can do to help your kitten getting through the teething period:

  1. Kitten-proof your home: Keep those dangerous items and your belongings away from your kitten which she might find appealing to chew on to protect your belongings and avoid the risk of electric shock or other serious problems.
  2. Offer the right kind of food: Provide your kitten finely chopped up food or soft, wet food – that don’t require excessive chewing, and avoid to give her too hard food to ensure that the food won’t scratch her sore gums, irritate her lose teeth, and she can eat without any trouble.
  3. Avoid brushing teeth: Even though brushing teeth is essential in cat dental care, it is better to avoid it during the sensitive teething period as it will just cause your kitten more harm for those sore little gums than good.
  4. Check dental health and monitor overall health: Check your kitten’s teeth and gums regularly (at least once a week) during teething and monitor her overall health to prevent any illness and ensure that your kitten’s teeth are growing in properly without any issue.
  5. No medicine: Please do not give your kitten medicine without discussing it with your veterinarian, even if you are worried about your kitten being in pain to prevent any unwanted further problems.
  6. Contact the veterinarian: If you are worried or concerned about your kitten for any reason, please don’t hesitate to contact your veterinarian who can give you detailed information and professional advice. Also, it is best to visit a veterinarian when your kitten is around six to eight old to make sure that your kitten’s teeth are formed correctly, there are no dental problems, and her overall health is a merit.

Please keep in mind that it is very important to address any problems early that your teething kitten experiences, so they don’t progress or get worse. Try these tips along with kitten teething toys to soothe your kitten during this sensitive, hard period, and if you notice anything unusual, don’t hesitate to contact your veterinarian.

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Final thoughts on kitten teething toys

It is not unusual for teething kittens to chew on anything they find appealing to ease their discomfort and relieve their pain. However, we cat owners, don’t like to watch them suffer and will try our best to keep them away from unpleasant things.

The best way we can do for them during this stage of their lives is to provide them kitten teething toys. Offering a variety of toys will not only direct them to chew on acceptable items but will also have several benefits. While it can soothe their uncomfortable experience and set their mind at rest, it can also avoid unwanted accidents and protect our belongings. Not to mention that it will teach good behavior and will prevent boredom and promote bonding.

However, some kittens might be picky and refuse to play with the teething toys. In this case, we can opt for different alternatives, like frozen toys or washcloth, wool blanket, cardboard box or even cat grass. Give your teething kitten different options and always let her choose what feels the best. This way you will definitely have a happy, playful cat.

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