Caring for your senior cat
These are all normal as a cat approaches their senior years – like us, they’ll want to slow down a little as they get older! Cats are usually classed to be of a senior age from around seven years old, but this can vary slightly depending on your cats breed and other factors.
Diet, fitness and any medical issues all contribute towards the expected lifespan of a senior cat. Even though they may seem a little calmer than when they were a young moggy, the later years that you share with your cat should still be as fun, loving and rewarding as ever.
Our team of PetCare Experts offer guidance and tips on how to make the most of your cats twilight years, for the both of you.
Your pet will love their cat naps even more when they have somewhere soft to cuddle into, especially as they get older. Senior cats can struggle with sore joints sometimes, so a cosy bed will provide snuggly support to keep them as comfortable as possible. Keep their bed in a warm place away from draughts so that they can get a little peace and quiet in a tranquil area.
To reduce stress on your cat’s joints, you can keep a bowl of clean water nearby so that they don’t have to travel so far when they want a drink. This will help encourage your pet to drink more to avoid dehydration and keep urinary tract infections at bay, which can affect older cats. It’s also a good idea to keep their litter tray nearby – even if your cat hasn’t used one before, they might find it useful to have one that is easily accessible in the house so that they don’t have to go so far to use the toilet.
Whether your pet likes to people-watch from a windowsill or sleep on the sofa, each cat is sure to have their favourite place, which is usually elevated from the ground. Although cats still like to jump, they might not be able to reach as high as they used to as they get older. By breaking up a jump into manageable steps, you can help them get where they want to be. For example, placing a footstool in between the floor and their favourite chair changes one big jump into two more manageable hops.
Like us, cats become a little less mobile as they get older. Moving less means that your pet won’t be burning through energy at the same rate that they did when they were younger, so they could be at risk of gaining weight.
By carefully managing their diet, you can help your cat to stay in shape. Correct portions of a specially formulated senior cat food should give them all the goodness that they need.