Lakewood Animal Hospital

36097 Goodwin Dr.
Locust Grove, VA 22508



Feline Odontoclastic Resorptive Lesions (also known as FORLs or neck lesions) are one of the most common abnormalities we see in our feline patients. This is a very painful disease and affects up to two thirds of cats. The cause of FORLs is unknown but is characterized by the progressive resorption of the tooth.                                

Grade 2  Grade 2

Grade 3  Grade 3

Grade 4  Grade 4

Grade 5 Grade 5


The first thing we see in these kitties' mouths is a small area of redness at the gingival margin and a small defect on the enamel of the tooth at the gumline. As the disease progresses, the gum becomes more inflamed and the area becomes painful.



X-rays are an integral part of the treatment of oral disease in every animal.  They are especially important in evaluating the full extent of FORLs and to identify affected teeth that may look normal above the gumline.

x-ray    x-ray

The x-ray on the left shows three normal 2-rooted teeth.  The x-ray on the right is of the same teeth in a cat with FORLs.  Both roots of the far left tooth, as well as one of the roots of the tooth on the far right, are almost completely resorbed. 


orange cat

Symptoms of FORLs include mouth pain, drooling, dropping food from the mouth, anorexia, dehydration, weight loss, and tooth fractures.   Some cats suddenly refuse either wet food or dry food that they had previously enjoyed.  Surprisingly, many cats do not show obvious signs of oral pain; however, their behavior changes for the better after these painful teeth are removed.


The only appropriate treatment for advanced FORLs is extraction.  This is the only way to create a pain-free mouth and a happy cat.


 If you have any questions about the oral health of your kitty, please give us a call to schedule an evaluation!