Why is my cat dropping food when eating and only eating on one side of his mouth?
Original Question: I took notice that my cat Astro has been eating only on one side of his mouth and not only that, he has also been dropping his food. - Shandell
Thanks for your question.
It would be inappropriate for me to speculate as to what could be the cause of this clinical sign you describe. However, I can give you a list of ‘rule outs’ that could apply here and then I would encourage you to visit your veterinarian so that they can perform a proper physical examination and appropriate diagnostics to confirm the cause.
Causes for dropping food out of the mouth and possibly to one side consistently are:
- Dental disease is a common cause. The pain of nerve exposure or a resorptive lesion (cavity) can lead a cat to avoid chewing on the affected side.
- A head tilt is present.
- A neurological disease causing a head tilt could exist
- Infection with toxoplasmosis could be present
- A brain lesion or mass
- Inner ear infection or damage
- An oral mass that occupies space on one side of the mouth that is necessitating chewing on the other side
- A traumatic lesion on one side of the mouth causing pain and avoidance of chewing on that side
- The previous extraction or loss of teeth leaving an opening for food to drop out
These are possibilities that I would recommend you work with your veterinarian to evaluate.
I hope this helps,
Dr. Clayton Greenway
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