How Long Do Cats Live?

September 12, 2009

in Cats

How long do cats live? Many new cat owners asked that question. There are is no easy answer as many factors can affect a cat’s lifespan. If an indoor cat is healthy and does not have any accidents, the cat can live for up to twenty-one years.

Spending time unsupervised outdoors puts the cat at risk for accident and injury that can greatly reduce the cat’s lifespan. Intentional or accidental poisoning, disease from other cats, and accidents such as being struck by a car are some of the main causes of early death for cats that spend time outdoors.

Stray cats and feral cats often live only a few years due to the hazards of being outdoors. Many stray cats also succumb to starvation.

Keeping a cat indoors is probably the best way to increase the cat’s chance of living a long life. There may be other steps that a cat owner can take to increase their cat’s chances of longevity.

Cat owners do have some control over some of the factors that can affect the cat longevity. Feeding a cat a healthy diet is a basic necessity for a cat to live a long life.

Some cat owners make the mistake of giving their cat extra food thinking that this benefits the cat. Extra food can cause the cats become obese which can put the cat at risk for some cat illnesses such as diabetes mellitus and arthritis.

Exercise helps the cat maintain good muscle tone and avoid obesity. Cat owners may need to encourage older cats to participate in active play since older cats are naturally less active.

Antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, and cat vitamins are examples of nutritionals supplements that are marketed as ways to keep cat healthy and help them live longer. A veterinarian should be consulted before the cat owner gives these products to the cat. Very little research has been done on cat vitamins and cat supplements to test their safety and effectiveness.

Some factors that affect the lifespan of the cat are not within the cat owner’s control such as cat diseases which often have genetic causes. Regular veterinary exams can help the cat live longer since the veterinarian can screen for cat diseases and may notice symptoms that the cat owner may miss. Since treating a disease early is the best way to avoid negative effects from the disease, regular veterinary checkups are crucial to protect the health the cat.

Moses Wright is a cat expert who can answer your cat health questions and perhaps also give you hundreds of unique cat names for you to choose from if you are getting a new cat. Visit his cat health resource website now.

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