Regular brushing keeps your cat's teeth and gums healthy and the best cat toothbrushes will make the task easier on you and your pet. These brushes all have soft bristles and come in different styles (finger or handle) and sizes to meet your kitties' oral care needs.
What makes one brush style better for you, will depend on your pet's size and temperament. To help you make the best choice let's look at the pros and cons of each.
- Finger brushes: Single-finger brushes are good for smaller breeds and ones that aren’t likely to bite you. These styles have soft, silicone nubs that are pet-safe and give a gentle cleaning. Though they are often too soft to take care of serious tartar build-up, they do offer more control than handle brushes for removing plaque before it causes real damage. As the name suggests, they are designed to go over your finger (like a thimble), you'll want to choose one that's sized right to you.
- Handle brushes: Brushes with a long, thin handle are good for cats that tend to be more finicky or bite because they keep your fingers at a safe distance. They're also excellent at reaching the back teeth, especially if they have an angled head. For the best fit possible, though, look for a double-ended version with two different sized heads. Compared to a silicone nub, these bristles are more effective at removing build-up, however, the design isn't as user-friendly, which means you'll still need a few rounds of practice to figure out which direction and pressure work best for your pet.
Whichever brush you choose, you'll want to replace it every three months and clean it thoroughly with water after every use. If you have multiple cats, use a separate brush for each pet. Also, note that you should never use human toothpaste for your feline, so to be safe, be sure to consult your vet first (for reference, you can find a list of the best cat toothpaste here.)
Now that you're ready to get your furry pal's teeth sparkling, you can take a look at a list of the best toothbrushes for cats on Amazon below I've also included one for kitten's because their cute little smiles matter, too.
1. The Best Finger Toothbrush
These finger brushes are made from BPA-free, food-grade silicone and are super flexible. The silicone "teeth" are effective for removing moderate plaque build-up while being gentle on sensitive gums. They are a popular choice with pet owners and have a 5-star rating after more than 1,000 reviews on Amazon. Reviewers praise them for their durability and for the amount of control they give: "You can actually feel that you're making contact with their teeth," wrote one. The key to success with a slip-on brush like this, though, is getting the right snug fit so the tool stays put on your finger. The brand advises choosing based on your ring size: size small (pictured) is best for those with a size 7 or less ring size. Otherwise, go for the large version. If you aren't sure, you can always get the latter and then make the fit a little tighter by placing a paper towel in between the brush and your finger.
One pet owner's praise: "We use these on our cats once a week. One of our cats has bad gingivitis so this really helps in between visits to clean off a little of the plaque. They are a little big for my fingers but pretty easy to use. They are well made and thick so it takes a lot to destroy them if our cats get a hold of them and use them as toys."
2. The Best Handle Toothbrush
The micro brush head makes this an excellent toothbrush for cats because it's small enough to get into their tiny mouths comfortably (so small, in fact, this is a great option for kittens, as well). The 15-degree angle of the handle at the top also makes it easier to reach the backs of their teeth for proper cleaning. And while most reviewers attest that the nylon bristles are quite soft, cat owners should still be mindful to be extra-gentle while they brush.
One pet owner's praise: "Teething kitten does not mind this brush one bit. Effectively cleans with nice small bristles at an angle. Use with milk flavored tooth-brushing gel and it's perfect. Bleeding has stopped, gums and teeth returned to healthy, and bad breath now a thing of the past."
3. The Best Dual-Headed Toothbrush
Another pick by H&H pets, this set of two-headed pet toothbrushes, give you the ability to alternate between a smaller head to get to the back teeth, and a larger one to be able to go over the rest quickly. The brush components are made from pet-safe materials and the soft bristles have been tested to assure they're gentle, yet effective on tartar build-up. The curved angle at the head makes the tool easy to control. Bonus: with two color options available in a pack, this is also a nice option for homes with more than one cat.
One pet owner's praise: "I use these for my cats, and although it's innately difficult to brush feline teeth, these seem to do the trick. If you haven't brushed your cat's teeth before, don't expect to get a full cleaning the first, second, or even third try. It takes them more time than you to get used to the concept, but in time they'll acclimate while you get better at your technique."
4. The Best Toothbrush Set For Newbies
If you're trying to introduce better oral hygiene practices with your pet, this brush set will help you figure out which method will work best for you — and it's super affordable. With your purchase, you'll get two dental cards (to remind you when kitty needs to be cleaned next), a plague tool, and a whopping 21 brushes: one bendable brush, four silicone finger brushes, six plastic finger brushes (three short and three long) with more traditional bristles, and 10 double-sided handle brushes. All brushes are made from pet-safe materials, though the plastic finger brushes may be harsh on sensitive gums. The set is also great for households with more that one animal, so you can assign one color for each cat or dog.
One pet owner's praise: "Having never brushed our cat’s teeth, I wasn’t sure which kind of brush would work the best. Thankfully, this set has several variations to choose from. She still doesn’t like it, but it was great to have so many."