Did you know that cats become seniors around age 10? Kitties are very low maintenance pets, but they still need love and care to thrive. As Fluffy ages, she’ll really benefit from some extra TLC. Here, a Portland, OR vet discusses senior cat care.
It isn’t uncommon for older cats to develop medical problems, such as diabetes and arthritis. Fluffy may need to see the vet more often, so her health can be monitored. At home, watch for signs of illness, and call your vet immediately if you notice anything unusual.
Offer your furball a good, high-quality diet, but don’t overfeed her. If Fluffy becomes obese, she’ll become even more susceptible to medical issues. Ask your vet for recommendations, including portion sizes, suitable treats, and advice on switching to a senior-formula kitty food.
Fluffy may appreciate a litterbox with low walls, which will be easier for her to get in and out of. If you have more than one floor in your house, keep litterboxes on every level. That way, your kitty won’t have to navigate the stairs as much.
As Fluffy ages, she may find it difficult to reach her whole body when grooming herself. Brushing your feline pal regularly will help keep her fur soft and smooth, and prevent mats and tangles.
Senior cats are nowhere near as frisky as kittens. However playing will still be good for Fluffy, both mentally and physically. Pique your kitty’s interest by dangling a wand toy in front of her, and letting her bat at it. Even a few minutes of playtime will be beneficial.
Small touches can make a big difference when it comes to keeping kitties comfy. Set out lots of beds for your furball. In winter, you may want to offer your cat a thermal or heated bed. Fluffy may also appreciate having pet ramps and stairs to help her reach her favorite perches.
Older cats sometimes get confused and forgetful. Fluffy may forget where the kitchen is, or get ‘stuck’ in a corner. She may then meow to vocalize her distress. Just comfort your pet as best as you can, and make sure she feels loved and safe. Just be very gentle when picking her up or putting her down.
Please contact us, your Portland, OR vet clinic, with any questions about your kitty’s health or care.