Senior cats, as with senior humans, require more specialized care than younger cats. Cats have a much shorter lifespan than humans do. As the cat ages, it is important to routinely monitor any changes in health or behaviour.
What are the stages of a senior cat’s life? What are signs of ageing?
Your cat enters early seniority at approximately 9-10 years of age. Senior cats are susceptible to changes we see in senior humans. Kidney issues, thyroid issues, obesity and arthritis are common in senior pets. As your cat continues to age, there may some behaviour changes such as increased vocalization as well as vision and hearing changes. That’s why more frequent check-ups are recommended for senior cats.
My senior cat is losing weight, what can I do?
If your cat is losing weight without any other changes (such as a change in diet), then please call Cambrian Animal Hospital to schedule an appointment for an exam. Kidney or thyroid illnesses are just two examples of the many conditions that can cause weight loss in your cat. Once our veterinarian has done the physical examination, a recommendation for diagnostic tests will be made to determine the cause of the weight loss.
How can I care for my senior cat?
Nutrition is critical for senior cats. You should be sure to feed a good quality food designed for senior or mature cats. Twice yearly examinations are an excellent method to monitor health. Bloodwork to check the internal workings in your beloved pet should be done routinely. Our veterinarians can also make suggestions for supplements that will benefit your pet’s specific needs, such as Glucosamine.
What are some common health issues?
Some of the most common health issues in senior cats include arthritis, chronic kidney disease, and hyperthyroidism. There is no cure for these conditions, but the conditions can be controlled with nutrition, medication, and supplements to ensure that your cat is feeling good and has a good quality of life.
Why is my senior cat having behavioural issues?
Senior cats frequently develop behavioural issues because they don’t adapt as well as younger cats to changes in the household. Senior cats enjoy routine and small changes can affect their behaviours. Changes such as furniture being moved, litter boxes being moved, the addition of new pets into the house, etc. can really affect senior cats. Senior cats can also develop some senility (just as some senior people do) so some behavioural changes can be caused by senility. Other behaviour issues can be related to changes in the health of the senior cat and are frequently the first symptoms noted by the owner. If your senior cat has developed some behavioural issues, please contact the hospital for recommendations.