How to Help Your Senior Cat Age Gracefully

Mar_2014_2Your cat is a friend for life. She’s also dependent on you, which means you have to take steps to ensure she has a long, happy and healthy life. Just like people, as cats age, they often require special care to ensure they remain happy and healthy.

But what kinds of changes can you make to the care you give your senior cat? Read on to learn more…

When is a cat a senior?
Your cat may live for 12 years or more. Typically, your cat will start to have age-related problems between 7- and 10-years-old. She may only exhibit minor issues or she may have significant challenges related to her age. No matter how age affects your cat, knowing how to properly care for her will ensure she has the best quality of life possible.

Accommodations
There are several accommodations you can make to keep your senior cat comfortable and happy.

  • Regular vet visit: Regular visits to the vet are important for cats of all ages, but they are particularly important for senior cats. A vet exam will determine if your cat is experiencing any age-related problems. If issues arise, your vet can also advise you on how to provide proper care.
  • Be aware: While regular visits to the vet are extremely important, issues can arise suddenly. Make sure you keep a close eye on your cat. If you notice any changes in her behavior or health, take her to the vet immediately. Common signs of a problem include:• Weight loss
    • Loss of appetite
    • Lethargy
    • Increased thirst
    • Reduced or increased urination
  • Feed her right: It’s very important to feed your senior cat a well-balanced diet. Choose foods that are specially formulated for older cats. If your furry friend is suffering from illness or disease, such as diabetes, it’s critical to follow the dietary advice of your veterinarian.
  • Offer moderate exercise: Exercise is important for a healthy life. Offer your cat moderate exercise by encouraging her to play with toys. However, don’t overdo it. When she starts showing signs of physical stress (heavy breathing or appearing to be tired or disinterested), it’s best to wrap-up play time.
  • Love her: You’re most likely doing this already, but it’s worth mentioning that your cat needs your love and affection, especially during health issues. Cuddle her, pet her and let her know she is loved.

 

By following these guidelines, you can help your cat feel happy, healthy and loved through her senior years. For senior cat food and more, visit your local Pet Supermarket.