Veterinarian’s Tips for Senior Cat Care

Veterinarian’s Tips for Senior Cat Care

Is your feline companion beginning to exhibit signs of age? While kitties are considered elders around the age of 11, many cats now live well into their teens or even twenties, so Fluffy may have a long retirement. You’ll probably notice modest, gradual adjustments instead of drastic ones. However, your kitty companion will require additional attention in her senior years. This article features advice from a local veterinarian on how to take care for a geriatric cat.

How Do You Care for a Senior Cat?

Fluffy will have the same fundamental requirements as any other cat, including good food, clean litter, proper medical care, and, of course, lots of love. However, there may be a few adjustments required.

Do Older Cats Require Larger Litter Boxes?

Consider obtaining your cat a litterbox with low sides. Older cats are more likely to become stiff and sore, and they may struggle to get in and out of high-walled spaces. She may also find it easier to use one that is wider and shallower than deep and narrow.

Should I groom my senior cat?

You may see Fluffy beginning to look disheveled. There are several potential explanations for this. One is that cats become stiff and painful as they age. Your cat may struggle to bend and stretch enough to clean her entire body. Senior cats’ skins may also create more oil than younger cats’. This can also leave her coat looking oily.

However, it is vital to recognize that untidy fur can sometimes indicate that your feline companion is not feeling well. If your kitty’s fur is quickly becoming unkempt, and/or you observe additional red flags, such as withdrawal, contact your veterinarian.

You can help your feline companion by gently brushing her. Cats rarely require baths, but some people enjoy bathing their feline companions. When brushing Fluffy, don’t pull too hard. Senior pets have extremely fragile skin. You do not want to damage your pet! Consult your veterinarian for detailed advice on this.

Should I Play with A Senior Cat?

Absolutely! In fact, playing with Fluffy is one of the most beneficial things you can do for her. Pouncing and jumping are excellent exercise for cats. Additionally, this provides mental stimulation. That’s especially crucial for senior cats. Just like humans, pets can experience cognitive impairment as they age. Focusing on catching the red dot will also exercise your cat’s intellect. (Plus, it’s adorable.)

Of course, this is only effective if Fluffy is feeling frisky. If she’d rather take another snooze, she’ll simply stroll away. That’s perfectly fine. One thing we know for certain about cats: unlike dogs, they will not push themselves to impress us. So you have no need to worry about your pet overdoing it.

In terms of safety, simply choose areas with a soft surface, such as a carpeted flooring.

Do Older Cats Need Special Care?

As she gets older, Fluffy’s requirements may change slightly. In general, you want to ensure that she has easy access to her food, drink, and litterbox. If you have a large home and/or multiple floors, keep litterboxes and water stations on each level. That way, your furry friend will not have to climb as many stairs.

You’ll also want to set out lots of beds and napping spots. Believe it or not, your sleepy furball will be able to nap even more than she used to. By the time your adorable pet reaches her golden years, she’ll be an amazing napping champion, able to sleep up to 20 hours every day. As you can probably imagine, giving your sleepy pet lots of comfortable places to hang out is one of the finest things you can do for her. You can buy beds or make your own. You can also fold blankets up and place them in boxes, on chests, or on ottomans. Fluffy will, of course, continue to enjoy boxes. You’ll get extra purrs if you place some of these in sunny areas or near windows with pleasant views.

We’d also recommend turning on a night light for your cat. Fluffy’s night vision may not be as good as it once was. She may also become forgetful and lose her path as she approaches the litterbox.

Another thing you may do to assist your pet is to install pet ramps or stairs. Footstools will also work. Contact your veterinarian for further information.

What Makes Senior Cats Happier?

Older cats seem to enjoy the same things as younger ones. All Fluffy really  wants is to feel loved, safe, and comfortable. Many of the topics we’ve discussed already address the first two. It’s also crucial to keep that engine running! Spend plenty of time with your kitty companion, providing attention and lap space. Just be gentle while picking up or putting your kitty down.

How Can I Keep a Senior Cat Healthy?

Many of the health problems that aging individuals confront also affect older cats. Some of those could include the following:

  • Obesity
  • Heart conditions
  • Diabetes
  • Kidney Disease
  • Arthritis
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Cancer
  • Loss of Vision
  • Loss of Hearing
  • Dental Issues


Your pet may need to visit the vet more frequently. This is also an excellent opportunity for getting updated information about Fluffy’s food and care needs.

In between checkups, look for signs of illness. If you observe anything out of the ordinary, please notify us immediately.

How Do I Know If My Senior Cat Is Sick?

Our feline friends can be a little coy about expressing their discomfort. Keep a close check on Fluffy’s appearance and behavior.

Here are some things to look for:

  • Hiding
  • Withdrawal
  • Poor Grooming
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Weight Gain/Loss
  • Stiffness
  • Respiratory Issues
  • Discharge
  • Fever
  • Lethargy
  • Litterbox Issues
  • Drooling
  • Limping
  • Changes in Appetite


Unusual vocalizations may also be a red flag. If Fluffy is typically silent but suddenly starts weeping, there could be an issue.

Why do old cats meow so much?

It is pretty common for senior cats to get a little yowly. cognitive deterioration is one possible reason for this. Senile cats might become forgetful and confused. They may become distressed since they do not fully grasp why or what is going on. Fluffy can also want more attention and cuddling. Alternatively, your kitty may be reacting to pain or discomfort. Contact your veterinarian for further information.

Can I Leave My Older Cat Alone?

this would depend on FLuffy’s age and condition. Most cats can be left alone for a day or two, as long as they have food, water, and clean litter, and someone checks on them. We wouldn’t recommend letting senior cats alone for longer than a day, though. Boarding may be a better alternative.

How Can I Keep My Older Cat Safe?

You’ll want to use the same basic petproofing procedures as you would with a younger cat. Fluffy will certainly be less playful than she ever was, but she may still try to devour your houseplants.

We also strongly advise keeping your pet friend indoors. We recommend that all cats be kept inside. However, older cats are more vulnerable. Not only are they more vulnerable, but they may be unable to flee possible attacks. Furthermore, Fluffy is at risk of forgetting how to get home. Take a precautionary approach here.

Do you have any queries about senior cat care? Contact us, your local pet hospital, at any time!

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