Cats are precious. When you take one home, you invite heaps of happiness into your life.
These fur balls are moody, eccentric, but very cute and a loving pet. If you own one or are thinking about making a cat a member of your family, you may be looking forward to knowing all about them – their feeding habits, nature, and even their lifespans.
The life expectancy of any cat depends on many factors, such as their health, diet and the environment in which they thrive. According to a recent report, the average lifespan of a domestic cat is 12-14 years. However, some cats can outgrow this parameter and live up to 20 years.
The world record for the oldest cat goes to Crème Puff, a cat from Texas. It lived for 38 years. Since then, no other pet or wild cat has broken the record. What’s good is that increasing veterinary care and awareness of good cat welfare have caused many fur balls to live longer than their expected lifespans.
Longevity of Popular Cat Breeds
Not all cats have the same lifespan. Below is the average lifespan of some popular breeds.
American Shorthair – 15-20 years
Bengal Cat – 14-16 Years
Burmese – 16-18 years
Calico – 12-15 years
Manx – 8-14 years
Maine Coon – 10-13 years
Persian – 10-17 years
Munchkin – 12-15 years
Ragdoll – 15-18 years
Russian Blue – 15-20 years
Siamese – 12-20 years
Savannah – 12-20 years
Sphynx – 10-15 years
What Happens When a Cat Gets Older?
Aging in your cat can be characterized by many physical and behavioral changes. For example, their skin becomes thinner and less elastic. Blood circulation decreases and your cat becomes prone to allergies and infections.
It’s also important to note that older cats tend to groom themselves less well than their younger counterparts. It can lead to skin odor, hair mats and even inflammation. The claws of aging cats become overgrown, brittle and thick, and you may need to trim them more often.
Old cats tend to hear less than younger cats and often experience changes in their eyes such as blurriness, decreased vision, and others. Several diseases, especially those associated with high blood pressure, can seriously affect their vision. Older cats are also prone to many dental diseases. They eat less food than expected because of their toothache.
Here are the other things that can happen to your cat as it gets old.
- Your cat may experience a decreased sense of smell, which may be partly responsible for the loss of interest in food. This discomfort is often associated with dental disease.
- Your cats’ kidneys can undergo a variety of age-related changes, with kidney failure being the most common. Be careful with kidney changes to detect the problem early.
- If your cat is suffering from degenerative joint disease or arthritis, know that he is aging. It may also have trouble accessing the litter box or water bowl.
- Hyperthyroidism, hypertension, inflammatory bowel disease, diabetes mellitus and cancer are other conditions to watch out for in your pet. Sometimes these conditions can also occur in younger cats.
- Other behavioral and personality changes such as amnesia, wandering, apparent disorientation, excessive meowing and avoidance of social interaction are other signs not to ignore when petting your cat.
What Factors Affect Life Expectancy in Cats?
Aside from a cat’s average life expectancy, many factors can affect its growth, quality of life, and longevity. If you are a cat parent, keep the considerations below in mind to ensure your pet lives a healthy life for a long time.
Routine medical care is important
Just like humans, animals need routine medical care. Your cat wouldn’t come up to you and complain that he isn’t feeling well. In many cases, you won’t notice what’s wrong with your cat until things get to the point where it can be late for effective treatment.
It is therefore essential to take your cat for routine care. When you take your pet to the vet, they examine their overall health and provide timely vaccines. These vaccines act as a preventative measure to protect them from diseases and infections.
Give them good food
Nutrition plays an essential role in your cat’s growth and nutrition. An ideal diet for cats includes a diet rich in moisture. There are many options available when buying food for your cat. It is best to discuss these different diets with your vet. The vet can also make recommendations for brands, products, and other details.
The role of exercise
Just like with humans, the benefits of exercise or an active lifestyle extend to your pets. Some cats are notoriously lazy. Too much laziness and a sedentary lifestyle are unhealthy for them. It is good to let your cat exercise or stay active. You can keep them busy with the many indoor games such as laser pointer, string game or others.
Your cat will love chasing the laser pointer or catching the string you are hanging over him. Investing in a cat wheel or treadmill is an excellent idea if you want to take their fitness to the next level,
Prevent their boredom
Cats may look lazy and undisturbed, but they need attention and affection from their owners. So make it a point to spend much of the day playing or spending time with your loving kitty. You can buy them new toys, provide walking and climbing opportunities on cat towers.
Take care of your cat
Grooming your cat every now and then is another way to keep him healthy. Regular baths and cleaning for your cat will keep their fur from harboring bacteria or germs. Usually a cat cleans its fur itself. But it’s good to wash them once every two weeks to keep them well-groomed. You might as well take them to a cat spa to do the necessary.
Your cat is your best friend, take good care of him.
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