Cats are considered “seniors” by the time they reach 10 years of age, and you can expect to notice changes in appetite, activity and overall behaviour. Fortunately, kitties today often live well into their teens and even their early 20s. The best way to help keep your cat as healthy as possible later in life is to recognize signs of ageing and learn more about common diseases that can affect senior cats.
What are the stages of a senior cat’s life? How to spot signs of aging?
A cat is considered to be mature once they reach 7 years of age. At that age, you may see some health issues. Once a cat reaches the age of 11, they are considered a senior, and you can expect some insufficiency in organ function. If your kitty reaches 15 or older, they are considered geriatric and will likely need regular veterinary care.
My senior cat is losing weight, what can I do?
Weight loss is often an alarming sign of an underlying medical issue in a senior cat. If your senior cat loses weight, we recommend contacting the hospital and arranging for a complete health check-up.
What are some tips for how to care for my senior cat?
Senior cats have different care requirements than those of younger cats; regular check-ups are essential to your pet’s health. Consider switching your cat’s diet to a senior, high-quality, diet. Keep your cat active and mentally stimulated at all times. Maintain your cat’s dental hygiene/care. Consider implementing safety measures around the house for your cat since senior pets usually have varying degrees of vision and hearing loss. Please feel free to call us at 204.489.9111 to speak to one of our team members regarding your senior pet’s health care.
What are some common health issues experienced by senior cats?
The most common health issues in senior cats are chronic kidney disease, increased thyroid hormones, osteoarthritis, and dental disease.
Why is my senior cat having behavioural issues?
A change in behaviour often indicates an underlying medical problem. We recommend a complete physical exam by one of our veterinarians to reveal any physical issues. It is common for geriatric cats to have some cognitive dysfunction.