Cats age at a faster pace than humans, however, they are living longer thanks to wellness and preventative care. As your cat ages, it is important for us to examine them more often in order to detect diseases earlier, so we can help them be comfortable and happy through their senior years.
What are the stages of a senior cat’s life? How to spot signs of ageing?
There are early seniors – these are cats that are roughly 7-9 years of age who are transitioning from adult to seniorhood. We also have seniors that are 10+ years old that will be more commonly affected with degenerative diseases. Some signs of ageing may include slowing down and inactivity, confusion, weight loss, decreased muscle mass and decreased appetite.
My senior cat is losing weight, what can I do?
Your cat is likely losing weight due to a medical condition. Healthy senior cats should not have weight loss unless there is an illness or disease condition affecting them. Your cat should be seen by a veterinarian for a physical examination, where they can further discuss diagnostic options.
How can I care for my senior cat?
It is important to have your cat assessed by a veterinarian on a biannual or annual basis, as often people are unaware of health problems that may already be present. If caught in a timely manner, these may be prevented from progressing.
What are some common health issues?
Common health issues that affect senior cats include osteoarthritis, hyperthyroidism, chronic renal failure, cancer, and cognitive decline.
Why is my senior cat having behavioural issues?
Your elderly cat may be having behavioural problems, as a result of cognitive dysfunction. This is akin to dementia in humans, however, there are safe options and supplements that can be given to help with age-related brain changes.