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I had a rough discovery of the importance or dental care too. My 7-year-old cat was diagnosed with Feline Ondontic Reabsorptive Lesions(FORLs) this winter. Vets don't completely understand it, but the teeth develop painful holes in the enamel and eventually break off, often leaving the nerves exposed. Poor kitties! There is no cure, but the lesions can potentially be treated if caught early, and there is some evidence that good brushing and cleaning habits can keep new lesions from developing.

Also, I have read a couple of articles that suggest a possible link between FORLs and vaccinations. Just another reason to talk to your vet about which vaccines are truly necessary, and find some fish flavored toothpaste!
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