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How to Decipher Cat Food Product Labels
How to Decipher Cat Food Product Labels

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Cat Life Expectancy: What Affects Your Cat’s Lifespan?

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The average cat’s lifespan is around 15 years. While a cat’s lifespan indoors can range from 12 to 18 years, some pet cats even live for up to 20 years. Outdoor cats lead significantly riskier lives as they are more prone to accidents and being attacked by other outdoor animals. Moreover, they often cannot receive medical attention in cases of ailments or injuries. This leads to them have a shorter life expectancy in comparison to their indoor counterparts. 

 

As a pet parent, you would want your fur baby to live a long and healthy life. It’s common sense that feeding your cat a high-quality diet has its benefits. But when it comes to maximizing your cat’s lifespan, diet is only part of the equation. Read up on everything you need to do to ensure your cat lives happily for a long time to come.

 

What are the different cat life stages?

A cat’s age span is divided into six stages. To understand how you can maximise your cat’s life expectancy, it is necessary to understand these life stages.
 

  • Kitten

    From birth till 6 months, the cats are in their earliest years and are called ‘kittens’. They undergo quick development during this time and require a lot of nutrients.
     

  • Junior

    From 6 months to 2 years of age, cats are considered ‘juniors’. During this time, they reach sexual maturity and develop a personality. When your cat is about a year old, they can be switched from kitten food to adult cat food.
     

  • Prime

    Between the age of 3 to 6 years, cats are considered to have reached their ‘prime’ age. They will be in their best physical condition during this time. However, do make sure that you still take your cat to the vet for regular check-ups.
     

  • Mature

    Cats are considered to be in their ‘mature’ life stage between 7 to 10 years of age. During this time, they might become less active. This might even cause them to put on some extra weight, so you may have to make changes to their diet. You may also have to add some extra vitamins to meals to improve immunity. This will be an important step in maximizing cat life expectancy.
     

  • Senior

    Between 11 to 14 years of age, cats are considered seniors and are at a higher risk of catching an illness. Ensure that you make regular visits to the vet and consult them frequently to ensure that your fur baby is not missing out on nutrition.
     

  • Geriatric

    At the age of 15 years or higher, cats are at the ‘geriatric’ life stage. During this time, they may remain mostly inactive and need more attention.
     

What is my cat’s age in human years?

Here is a brief guide to explain what the average age of cats is in human years:
 

  1. When a cat turns 1 year old, it is equivalent to a human turning 15 years old.
  2. When a cat turns 2 years of age, it is considered equivalent to a human turning 24 years old.

  3. After a cat turns 2, each following year in their life amounts to 4 human years. So, when a cat is 3 years old, it amounts to 28 human years; when 4 years old, it amounts to 32 human years, and so on.

     

What factors affect the average lifespan of a house cat?

Knowing what affects your pet’s lifespan can help you take the right steps to prolong longevity. 
 

  1. Proper diet and water

    Let’s start with something you do every day: feed your cat. There are several healthy options to choose from, so we’ll help you zero in on the formula that’s best for your cat. It’s important to note that cats are natural carnivores. Therefore, a formula with meat as the primary ingredient is a great place to start. Meat as a protein source has certain nutrients, such as taurine, that non-meat protein sources simply do not. Also, along with a proper diet, ensure your cat stays hydrated.
     

  2. Medical maintenance

    Regular visits to the veterinarian can help nip health issues in the bud. For instance, a vet will be able to tell if your cat is gaining too much weight and can recommend a diet and fitness program to get your kitty back to a healthy size.

    You may even want to bring a fresh faecal sample along to your next appointment. Your vet can use this sample to search for ringworms. This tip can save you extra trips to the vet’s office in case your cat does not cooperate, so to speak, during their appointment.

    Also, vets provide your cat with the vaccinations they need to fight off diseases such as feline rabies. Some vaccinations are required annually, while others should be administered every three years. Your vet’s office can help you keep track of it all, so remember to schedule that appointment!
     

  3. Attention

    Your cat relies on you for more than just healthy food and fresh water. They need stimulation. Sure, cats love their independence, but let’s be honest, they love getting attention. By playing with your cat for even 10 to 15 minutes a day, you are doing wonders for their lifespan. Some great games to play don’t even require fancy toys. Get a piece of string and tie it around a clean sock, then yank the string whenever your cat comes in close to investigate. Voila! Instant fun!
     

  4. Exercise

    Cats don’t go on runs as dogs do, so keeping your cat active with games and toys is the best way to help keep them fit. About 30 minutes of exercise or playing in a day is enough to have a significantly positive impact on maximizing your cat’s lifespan.
     

  5. Oral health

     

    If your pet’s teeth are left unclean, they can develop plaque and tartar which can cause severe problems like pain, tooth loss, or kidney ailments. So, ensure that you take your cat for regular dental check-ups.
     

Follow these tips and your cat will be on her way to a long and happy life with you. You’re a great owner for taking the time to read this article. It shows how much you really care about her. Now step away from the computer and show your cat some attention!

Frequently asked questions

  1. What is the maximum lifespan of a house cat?
    • The average cat’s lifespan lies in the range of 12 to 18 years. However, some cats do live up to 20 years. 

     

  2. How old is an 18-year-old cat in human years?
    • When a cat turns 1 year old, it is considered to be about 15 human years. The second year of a cat’s life amounts to about 24 human years. After that, every following cat year amounts to about 4 human years. So, when a cat turns 3 years, it is considered equivalent to 24 human years, and when the cat turns 18 years old, it amounts to about 88 human years.

     

  3. Can cats live longer than 20 years?  
    • The average age of cats is considered to be around 15 years. However, some cats do live up to 20 years and even longer. In fact, there are numerous records of cats having lived for more than 25 years; the oldest one (named Creme Puff) lived for 38 years and 3 days.

     

  4. What are the signs of an old cat?  
    • When cats enter the senior life stage, you will notice a few of these signs - inactivity, weight loss, change in appetite, disorientation, behavioural changes, and change in the sleep cycle, among others.

     

  5. Do male cats live longer than female cats?
    • As per records, female cats tend to live longer than their male counterparts. Also, neutered cats have been known to live longer than unneutered cats and spayed cats have been known to have a higher chance of outliving unspayed cats.

     

  • Anti rabbies Vaccine
    Anti rabbies Vaccine
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    Anti rabbies Vaccine

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    Rabies is a dangerous virus that affects the warm-blooded animal kingdom. It spreads through the bite or starch of an infected animal, making the infection easily transmissible amongst animals and humans alike. Since there is no effective rabies treatment yet, the only solution to combat this fatal virus is through vaccination. Veterinarians recommend anti-rabies vaccine for pets to protect them and their humans from this deadly virus.
     

    Anti-rabies vaccine is one of the core vaccines for cats, in addition to the 4-in-1 cat vaccine. It helps prevent the cases of rabies in cats and kittens, contributing to the overall health of your feline friend. However, before getting your cat vaccinated with rabies injections, it is essential to know a few details about this disease and how to prevent it. So, let’s dive right into it.
     

    How does rabies spread?

    The rabies virus depends on the host body for survival. As the virus cannot survive outside of the host body, it spreads through open wounds and mucous membranes in the eye, mouth, and nose. The virus transmits through the saliva of the infected animal. If a rabies carrier bites or starches your pet, then it too becomes infected with the virus. Typically, the incubation for rabies in cats ranges from a few days to a few years.
     

    Since rabies is a deadly infection, it is imperative that you, as a cat parent, watch out for its symptoms. So, let’s take a look at a few signs of rabies in cats:

    1. Fever

    2. Lethargy

    3. Low appetite

    4. Difficulty breathing

    5. Hypersalivation

    6. Difficulty swallowing

    7. Abnormal behaviour

    Curing rabies is not an option post-incubation as there is no proper medication available in the market yet. Hence, keeping this fatal infection at bay is of paramount importance. And how can you do that? By ensuring that your cat is vaccinated with an anti-rabies injection.
     

    Do indoor cats need rabies vaccination?

    Anti-rabies vaccine for cats is a must. Veterinarians monitor rabies shots for both indoor and outdoor cats. While there is a misconception that rabies vastly affects dogs, it can find its way to cats and other warm-blooded animals as well. Cat’s rabies vaccination prepares your indoor kitty to fight the deadly virus. Hence, do not skip on annual booster shots for both indoor and outdoor cats.
     

    While you may think, your indoor cat is safe from the fatal disease, it is best to ensure complete healthcare for its overall well-being. Cats often socialise with outside cats by licking, sniffing, or starching each other. Indoor cats can get the rabies virus if they socialise in this manner with an infected outdoor or stray cat. Anti-rabies vaccination is the best way to avoid any remote possibility of your kitty getting infected. It builds antigens in the cat’s body, so your fur baby can tackle the rabies virus.
     

    How often should cats receive rabies vaccination?

    Various brands offer anti-rabies vaccines for cats in the market. Hence, it is best to seek a veterinarian’s advice regarding  vaccination. They will take multiple factors, such as your kitty’s age, breed, and lifestyle, into consideration before recommending a brand. Similarly, when it comes to the frequency of taking the anti-rabies vaccination, it all depends on the type of vaccine recommended for your pet. If your vet recommends an adjuvant vaccine, your cat might have to be inoculated once every year. On the other hand, if they suggest a non-adjuvant vaccine, you must note that these vaccines are generally administered once in three years. 
     

    When to schedule feline anti-rabies vaccination

    Anti-rabies vaccine is one of the core vaccinations for cats. It prepares your cat to fight the virus by boosting immunity. The first dose of the anti-rabies vaccine is administered once the kitty turns 12 weeks old. After the initial dose, depending on the type of vaccine, you will need to get your feline friend vaccinated either annually or once in three years.
     

    Side effects of the anti-rabies vaccine

    As a cat parent, you must know the potential side effects of this vaccine. So, let’s take a look at them:

    1. Low-grade fever

    2. Lethargy

    3. Low appetite

    4. Swelling and redness at the injected site

    Cat parents should monitor not only the anti-rabies vaccine but also other core vaccines like 4 in 1 cat vaccine, FeVac 5, and 3-in-1 cat vaccine. Regular vaccination and annual health check-ups ensure your kitty leads a healthy life. So, ascertain that you provide your fur baby with all the care it requires.