How Long do Cats Live?

How Long Do Cats Live?After watching your kitten grow up right before your eyes, or see a family friend get long in the tooth, it’s only natural to wonder, “How long do cats live?”

Thanks to significant research in the fields of nutrition, preventative disease and feline anatomy, cats are living longer than ever. Though a cat’s life expectancy depends on many things, such as lifestyle, breed, vaccination status, location, and reproductive status, the average indoor cat lives 12-18 years. Outdoor cats, on the other hand, are at a higher risk for accident, trauma, and illness, and thus have an average life expectancy of 4-6 years.

The oldest living feline, according to the Guinness book of world records, was a cat named Crème Puff, who lived to be 38 years and 3 days old.

Common diseases in the cat include dental and periodontal disease, chronic kidney disease, thyroid dysfunction, diabetes and obesity. An important step to ensure your cat lives the longest and most healthy life they can is routine veterinary care and examinations. Ensuring your pet is up to date on vaccinations, preventative medications and their yearly examination are paramount to ensure diseases are appropriately treated and diagnosed early.

Cat Years to Human Years

Just like there’s not a clear-cut answer to the “how long do cats live?” question, calculating your kitty’s age isn’t a matter of basic math.

A common misconception is that one “cat year” is roughly equal to seven “human year,” meaning that a 1-year-old cat is equivalent to a 7-year-old child and a 5-year-old cat is equivalent to a 35-year-old adult. In fact,  cats actually age differently than people do.

Although there is no scientific formula for calculating the rate of aging in relation to humans, it is generally accepted that the first two years of your cat’s life are equivalent to the first 25 years of human life. After this time, cats age at a rate of roughly four times that of a human; meaning after the age of two, one year is roughly equivalent to four “cat years.”

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