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What to Expect As Your Cat Ages

Is your cat entering her senior years? Our feline friends generally grow old gracefully, but you can expect to see some gradual changes in Fluffy’s appearance and behavior as she enters her golden years. Below, a Mt. Pleasant, SC vet discusses what to expect as your cat ages.

Less Athletics

Kittens love climbing all over, well, pretty much anything and everything, including you, but older cats often have difficulty jumping. Help Fluffy out by offering pet ramps or stairs, or even just arranging a footstool to make it easier for your furball to get on and off the couch. If you see your kitty about to jump onto or off something, give her a gentle lift.

Calmer Cat

As your kitty ages, she’ll become less interested in playing, and more interested in naps. This can be a good thing: you won’t find yourself plucking your furball off counters so much, and she won’t be as likely to pounce on you playfully. Playing is good for cats, however, so try to play with your cat every day. Even if Fluffy only makes a few half-hearted swipes at her catnip mouse, it will still be good for her … and adorable to watch.

Hearing/Vision Loss

Just like people, sometimes cats experience a decline in their sight and hearing as they age. Your kitty may not come when called, especially if she can’t hear you. Keep a nightlight on after dark to help Fluffy find her way around after bedtime.

Purrsonality

Your older kitty may become frightened more easily, so Fluffy may start hiding when you have company, even if she used to be quite friendly with visitors. But when it comes to spending time with you, your cat may become even cuddlier, and may want to be petted or held frequently. Get that purr going by indulging your pet’s requests for attention.

Health

Cats can develop various medical issues as they age. Take your kitty to the vet at least once a year for checkups, so your vet can check for developing health problems. Ask for specific recommendations on Fluffy’s care and feeding. In between appointments, watch for any signs or illness, and contact your vet immediately if anything seems off.

Please call us, your Mt. Pleasant, SC veterinary hospital, with any questions or concerns about your senior cat’s health. We are here to help!

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