When we as humans are very little, we start out our lives growing in a set of small, adorable baby teeth, 20 of them in total. Nearly every adult remembers the process of losing those baby teeth, either by wiggling, pulling, or by these teeth falling out on their own. Once our baby teeth fall out, the empty space exposed a set of of new, full grown adult teeth beneath our gums. Not only are human adult teeth larger than baby teeth, but they’re also more plentiful in number, hitting 32 teeth for the average human adult.
But what about cats? Do their teeth follow a similar pattern? And how many teeth do kittens and adult cats have?
How Many Teeth Do Cats Have?
If you suspected that kittens start out with a set of smaller teeth that are fewer in number than their adult cat counterparts, just like with humans, you were spot on.
Kittens have 26 baby teeth, while adult cats have 30 teeth.
Of these teeth, kittens have: 12 incisors, 4 canines, and 10 premolars. Adult cats have: 12 incisors, 4 canines, 10 premolars, and 4 molars. So the difference in number is accounted for by the 4 new molar teeth.
Let’s do a quick double take back to compare with humans. Kittens have 6 baby teeth more than human babies, but then a flip happens: adult cats have 2 teeth less than adult humans. A bit strange, isn’t it?
Of course, of those 32 human teeth, 4 are wisdom teeth, and so if you happened to get all your wisdom teeth removed (I’m pretty sure I have), you would then officially have 2 teeth less than an adult cat once again – same as when you were a child compared to a kitten. Again, I think this is pretty fascinating.
Whichever way you look at it, the number of teeth cats and humans have is actually relatively close. When cats are compared to the “other” most popular pet in the world, however, the rambunctious dog, you see an enormous difference – cats aren’t even close to being in the running for first place!
Puppies start off with a set of 28 baby teeth, and once they become full-grown adult dogs, actually get a grand total of 42 adult teeth in! That’s a barely noticeable two tooth lead over kittens when dogs are puppies, yet whopping 12 tooth lead over full grown cats in the dog’s adulthood! Again, super strange I think; even more so than when you compare cat to human teeth counts.
How Many Teeth Would You Have Guessed a Cat Had?
Before reading this article, did you ever take a guess at how many teeth cats had? Ever wonder whether a cat had a similar number of teeth to humans? Did you suspect they had more teeth or less teeth than we do – or about the same number?
What about dogs? Had you ever wondered whether dogs had more or less teeth than cats? If you had guessed, would you have suspected adult dogs had so many more teeth than adult cats?
Let me know in the comments!