Senior Cat Care

As your cat ages, his nutritional requirements become more comprehensive. Maintaining healthy senior cat care can help promote a better quality life in the elderly years of your cat's life.  

The Aging Process

Undeniably, your cat is aging from the first minute of life. Many factors, like genetics, diet and environment are responsible for determining what the quality of life will be like when your cat reaches an elderly age. Whereas genetics cannot be controlled and there is no way to predict what is genetically in store for your cat, diet and environment are certainly controllable factors. You may start to notice some changes occurring in your cat around the age of 8 to 12. This is the time when physical signs of age start to present themselves. 

When cats are young, they have an insatiable curiosity and desire to run and play. However, as your cat ages, his agility starts to break down. Any energy or endurance that he has is being focused on maintaining other systems of the body, rather than allowing him to use it for play time. This can sometimes lead to a semi-depressive state for your cat.

You may also notice a higher sensitivity to movement in your cat. Whereas your cat used to be able to jump from the floor all the way up to the mantle of the fireplace, you are now noticing that your cat becomes whiny when simply trying to jump onto the couch. That indicates that the joints are aging and the flexibility of your cat is decreasing.

Your cat may start throwing up randomly. Not excessively, but just enough to make you wonder what is going on. Because your cat is aging, it is likely that his digestive system is having trouble digesting and absorbing food. Not only can this cause your cat to feel empty and unsatisfied, it also means that your cat is not getting the nutrients he should from food. Because calories and fat intake is being reduced, this can lead to a drastic drop in weight.

Foods Formulated for Senior Cat Care

Heart disease, digestive problems, colitis and other conditions become more common as your cat ages. If your cat has any health condition, he will require special dietary needs. If he doesn’t have any particular health condition, other than old age, he may still require a specialty food because of his advanced age. Some of the senior cat foods available include:

  • Eukanuba Mature Care Formula Senior Cat Food
  • Pro Plan Chicken and Rice Formula Cat Food for Senior Cats
  • Nutro Natural Choice Complete Care Senior
  • Purina ONE Senior Protection Formula

Senior cat food is specially formulated to combat some of the more common ailments of old age. They are high in fiber and antioxidant rich. Fiber is an essential nutrient for older cats because it helps support the digestive system. Antioxidants are important because they maintain a healthy immune system.

Home Care of the Senior Cat

In addition to feeding specialty foods, it is equally important to provide dedicated home care to your senior cat. For cats that have aching joints and trouble getting around, try placing a set of plush-cushioned steps next to the sofa. This will give your cat the ability to get up and down from the couch more easily. You can also try placing food dishes and the litter box in the same geographical location of your home. This will make it so that your does not have to walk from one end of the house to the other when he needs to defecate.

Senior cat care is important for your senior cat. Because his body is changing and his needs are changing, your approach at caring for him has to change, as well. Feeding him a diet that is specially made for the senior cat, and easing things around the house for him will help your cat to live a happy and healthy life in his elderly years.