Adopting an Elderly Cat

When thinking about adopting a cat, many people will opt for a kitten or a young cat, as they're lively, cute and fun to play with, so elderly cats sadly wait longer for that special someone to adopt them, just when they are most in need. Don’t let their age put you off, the golden oldies are still very active, loving and friendly and can live into their late teens and early 20’s in good health. There are so many advantages to sharing your home with an older cat.

Older cats tend to stay closer to home and may prefer the quiet life, so with some simple measures in place you can make a wonderful forever home for an older puss. They are more likely to be already litter trained so are less likely to forget where the litter tray is. Providing several litter trays in the house can be useful even if your adopted cat has been used to toileting outside. A larger litter tray gives them ample room to move around inside and one with low sides makes it easier to get in and out.

Cats are generally considered geriatric from around 12 years of age but there are lots of simple ways you can ensure your elderly cat is comfortable and happy. You will then be rewarded with a cat who is happy to spend their twilight years with you as a contented pet and a wonderful companion.

Your elderly cat may appreciate a few boxes here and there to help them climb and make sure they have a variety of cosy well padded beds in safe warm places that can be easily accessed. They may not be as agile as they were, especially if they are stiff with arthritis, so providing easy ways for them to access higher surfaces will be appreciated.

Older cats may need a bit of extra help with grooming to keep their skin and fur healthy and it provides valuable bonding time. Gentle brushing and stroking is great for de-stressing and has been shown to lower blood pressure. You can also help your older cat by placing water and food bowls in a few different places around the house both upstairs and downstairs, so your feline friend doesn’t have to struggle with stairs just to eat and drink. Your vet can advise about suitable diets for older cats. Cats like to scratch to keep their claws in good health, and an older puss may appreciate a horizontal surface which may be easier for them to scratch such as a piece of carpet.

Older cats may get lost or go missing so please make sure your cat is microchipped and keep their details up to date. Visit your vet if you have any health concerns about your older feline friend. Many conditions are treatable, and your vet may be able to help your cat get more enjoyment from their twilight years.

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