Caring For An Older Cat

Some domestic cats have been known to live well into their early twenties.

But anything over thirteen years is considered senior for our feline friends.

Older indoor cats tend to be less active. They may sleep more, and may have trouble reaching some of their old spots without human help.  

Let’s talk about caring for an older cat.

Caring For An Older Cat

What Is Considered Old Age For A Cat?

In general cats are considered to be elderly once they reach 11 years of age.

Senior cats are defined as those aged between 11-14 years and super-senior cats 15 years and up. (

What Makes a Senior Cat Happy?

Place resources such as food, water, litter boxes and bedding in multiple locations where your cat can easily access them.

If your cat is having trouble jumping to favourite high surfaces, add a few steps or ramps for access.

Here Are Some Signs Of A Happy Cat:

  • A relaxed posture.
  • Social sleeping.
  • Playful behaviour.
  • A good appetite.
  • A healthy appearance, keeping themselves well groomed.
  • Cats can be very vocal, especially when happy.

How Can You Tell If Your Old Cat Is Happy?

Look for These Signs of a Happy Cat:

  • Eating regularly.
  • Playing.
  • Using their litter box.
  • Grooming in front of you.
  • Snuggles, cuddles, lap sits and co-sleeping.

How Do You Handle An Old Cat?

Some Tips for Caring for Senior Cats:

  • Pay extra attention to your senior cat’s diet.
  • Increase your cat’s access to water.
  • Don’t neglect your cat’s dental health.
  • Give senior cats daily exercise and enough mental stimulation.
  • Don’t skip biannual vet visits.

Do Older Cats Like To Cuddle?

Yes, cats can become more affectionate with age.

Some specific cat breeds, especially male, neutered cats, show more love to their owners as they age. (

What Do Cats Do When They Miss You?

Signs that your cat has missed you include affectionate behaviour and extra purring.

A good sign that your cat is happy you’re back is if they show physical affection such as head butting, purring, rubbing against you and stretching.

How Much Attention Do Older Cats Need?

Cats need at least ten minutes of your undivided attention per day. Depending on the cat, those ten minutes can take the form of play time or bonding time.

A kitten may prefer that you play with them, while an older cat might prefer cuddling in your lap. You also might mistake their request for attention as a request for food. (Source:

Should I Get A Kitten For My Senior Cat?

Many well-meaning cat owners assume a kitten may be good company for a senior cat.

But cats aren’t like people, or dogs for that matter, and many prefer to spend their golden years alone. (Source:

Do Old Cats Love Their Owners?

Yes, cats do love their humans, even if sometimes they have a funny way of showing it.

In fact, they form strong attachments to their owners and display their emotions very similar to humans. Like people, cats can show their love through understanding and concern for others. (Source:

Can You Leave A Cat Home Alone For A Few Days?

Leaving a cat alone for several days is not recommended. Even if you have an automatic food dispenser, plenty of water, and several litter trays, several days is too long to leave your cat alone.

They could run out of food, start going outside of their litter tray because it’s dirty or become ill from the stress of being left alone.

Having a friend or family member check in on them each day can be an option to consider if you have to go out of town temporarily.

Are Cats Happier In Pairs?

Despite their independent nature, cats are social creatures that need companionship to thrive. Left alone cats can develop behavioural problems, and even show signs of depression.

Cats in bonded pairs are more likely to be better adjusted. (Source:

Are Indoor Cats Unhappy?

The bottom line is most cats can be totally happy living indoors. But owners need to put in the effort to provide for their environmental and behavioural needs.

What Do Cats Think About Being Picked Up?

In general, if cats had their choice, many would probably prefer to never be picked up and held.

For a cat, there’s security in having all paws on the ground and the ability to move at will. For many cats, being picked up and lifted off the ground increases stress. (Source:

What Are Some Signs Of Affectionate Cat Behaviour?

Here are Some Other Examples of Affectionate Cat Behaviour:

  • Kneading.
  • Purring.
  • Meows.
  • Curling up in your lap.
  • Grooming, licking.
  • Happy and excited to see you.
  • Headbutting, or rubbing the sides of their face on you.
  • Rubbing up against your legs or ankles.
  • Jumping up on surfaces to get closer to you.

Final Thoughts:

Cats have a reputation for being unaffectionate, but the truth is that’s not always the case, they just show their love in different ways.

For senior animals, ensure they are eating regularly. Happy and content cats have good appetites and enjoy their food. If cats feel good, they will also keep themselves well groomed.

Please comment or follow the links, thanks for reading.

Read More:

How To Keep Your Pet Happy

Can Pets Make Us Happier?

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