The average cat life-span is 12-14 or 14-16 years depending on which studies you read.
Pet food manufacturers recommend senior formulation foods for cats over the age of 8 and many vets consider the cat geriatric when it reaches 10 years old. Generally, once your cat is over 12 years old, it is an 'older cat' and its needs and habits change. Popular belief has it that one year of a cat's life is equivalent to 7 human years. In fact, kittens mature faster than human children and the rate of ageing slows down to one year equalling only 4 human years after only 2 years as the equivalence chart below shows:
CAT'S AGE - EQUIVALENT HUMAN AGE - COMMENTS
- 2-3 months - 9-12 months - Kittens/humans weaned. Kittens are becoming less dependent on the mother.
- 4 months - 2-3 years - Talking/adult communication in children. Under natural conditions, the kitten is fully independent of the mother.
- 6-12 months - 12-15 years - Sexual maturity, most females now fertile and able to have young although they may not be fully-grown.
- 2 years - 24 years -
- 3-6 years - 28-40 years -
- 6-9 years - 40-52 years -
- 9-13 years - 52-65 years - Most cats are beginning to take things easier.
- 13-17 years - 65-85 years - Active but ageing. Signs of senility in some individuals, senses less acute, injuries heal more slowly or incompletely. Internal organs less efficient.
- 17-19 years - 83-92 years - Probably frail due to loss of bone density, subcutaneous fat and muscle tone. Skin more fragile. Hearing, sight and mobility affected. Less supple
- 19-22 years - 92-100 years - Amazing!
- 22+ years - 100+ years - An exceptional individual