My cat is grinning right side of mouth...? - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 12:28 AM Thread Starter
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My cat is grinning right side of mouth...?

For the past day, our cat has been grinning the right side of his mount a couple times a minute somtimes. It almost looks like he's smiling, but it's only his right side. Also, he's been squinting his right eye lately too. He doesn't really meow or act disturbed, and it still loving and plays with the other cats just fine.

Any ideas as to what this might be? Doesn't look too serious, but we're not doctors. If this is something we should get checked out, we will take him to the vet. Just don't want to spend a few hundred to have a vet diagnose him with something small that could be easily solved at home, if anything is truly wrong at all.

Anyone able to help?

Thanks.
Sean
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 12:38 AM
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Re: My cat is grinning right side of mouth...?

I would guess that it's a dental problem. Any change in eating habits?
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 12:45 AM Thread Starter
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Re: My cat is grinning right side of mouth...?

Nope, no change in his eating habits. Perhaps he chewed on something that made his mouth soar, or perhaps cut his gums?
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 12:53 AM
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Re: My cat is grinning right side of mouth...?

I think the kitty's mouth/teeth need to be examined. The other possibility is a neural problem, something they can't control like a tic from a stroke or something, but this does seem like a mouth/tooth problem.

Mallie came in one night, pawing at her mouth. I thought she had something stuck between her teeth or bridgeing between her molars. When I opened her mouth, I saw that one of her smaller upper molars had been knocked sideways and was pointed into her mouth. Every time she tried to close her mouth, that crooked tooth would poke her tongue. I reached in with my finger, hoping to push it back into proper alignment but it popped right out and flew into the living room.
She shook her head a few times and then relaxed, groomed herself and had a snooze.
I called the vet the next day, but they told me if she didn't appear to have any problems eating, not to worry about it. She did fine so I didn't bring her in. At her next check-up I had the vet look/feel and she said she couldn't feel any sharp poke-y things under her gums so she was just fine.



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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 01:57 AM
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Re: My cat is grinning right side of mouth...?

Wow. My mind went directly to "mini-stroke." Yup, that's how easily I freak out about my girls.

I would get his teeth checked out at least.

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-28-2009, 02:02 AM
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Re: My cat is grinning right side of mouth...?

If your cat is continuing to make these faces (squinting/smiling) tomorrow, I would definitely bring the cat to the vet. If whatever the problem is, is making the cat make faces for this long then *something* needs to be taken care of. Cats don't make continual faces over 'minor' things, there is some sort of problem the cat needs help with.
Best of luck with the kitty, and let us know how it resolves...
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-29-2009, 05:11 AM Thread Starter
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Re: My cat is grinning right side of mouth...?

We went to the vet and he said the dental exam was normal. He wasn't sure what it was. Here is a video of what he's doing, if you have any ideas.

Thanks for the help so far!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5FI1BMhNpDo
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-29-2009, 05:45 AM
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Re: My cat is grinning right side of mouth...?

OMG! He is just adorable!
And...he certainly doesn't look like a cat who has a problem. Completely NOT what I was expecting to see.

What he is doing reminds me of a dog whose lip has got dry and 'stuck' to its' teeth, so it sort of grins that lip to move it and get the lip off the teeth. Oh, I'm not describing that well at all. It also kind of looks like an animal that is smelling a smell it doesn't like, BUT, your kitty isn't really making a true "Ugh!" kind of face. Another thing it looks like, is when I sometimes gently pet my cats' faces and when my hand 'drags' on their whiskers, I sometimes see them make that movement with their lip.
What he *really* reminds me of, is my kitty Reilly.
Your kitty doesn't seem to even be aware of what it is doing, and Rei did a similar thing, too. Rei had a severe medical problem that got worse over time, but his back legs would sometimes quiver and shake like they had a charlie horse...but he *never* appeared to be in any pain...his legs would be stretched straight out with his toes spread and they'd just sort of quiver there. I could rub his legs and the muscles would relax...but what reminds me like your cat...is Rei never seemed to be aware his legs were even *doing* something.
The thing Rei's legs did, didn't bother him at all. And it seems this 'grin' thing isn't bothering your cat at all, either...so I guess I wouldn't worry about it. Did he do it for the vet to see?
...this is a very odd thing!
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-30-2009, 10:29 PM
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Re: My cat is grinning right side of mouth...?

It looks like it's involuntary and the cat isn't aware that it's happening which makes me to think it's some kind of neurological issue. How often does it happen? How old is your cat?
Seizures can present themselves in many many ways including being just twitching of one or more muscles (it's not always thrashing around on the floor aka grand mal seizures). My dog died from a brain tumor last year at the age of 7 yrs and the beginning of his problem presented itself with facial twitches (which later became seizures effecting his face/neck muscles and then full blown grand mal seizures as tumor grew). Now....obviously that's a worst case scenario but shouldn't be discounted completely.

On a lighter note, if it is neurological, it isn't always that big of an issue. One of my rats (yes, I have rats as pets) has some kind of neurological problem...basically causing her to involuntarily move her head to one side with rhythmical twitching of the eye ball and eye lids of left eye. She does it 24/7, even in her sleep but it hasnt effected her in any other way and she's over 3 yrs old now, outliving her littermates.
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