No Description
Cats usually live longer than most dogs and it is no longer unusual for them to live until 17 or beyond.  How long an individual cat will live depends on many factors such as genetics, lifestyle, type of diet and of course the appropriate veterinary care. 
 The rule of thumb is that at about age 8, a cat is considered to be middle-aged. At age 12 and above, a cat is considered to be in old age.

 

    CAT'S AGE                                                 HUMAN AGE EQUIVALENT   

      6 months........................................................................... 10 years

                                                          1 year  .............................................................................. 16 years

                                                          2 years  ............................................................................ 21 years

                                                          4 years ............................................................................. 29 years

                                                          6 years ............................................................................. 37 years

                                                          8 years ..............................................................................45 years

                                                        10 years ..............................................................................53 years

                                                        14 years ..............................................................................69 years    

                                                        16 years ..............................................................................77 years

                                                       18 years ..............................................................................85 years

                                                       20 years ..............................................................................94 years

                                                       21 years ............................................................................100 years

        

As you can see, a seven year old cat is well into his 'forties'.  And since one year for a cat is equivalent to four human years, many changes can take place in what for us, is a fairly short period of time.  That is why the American Veterinary Medical Association as well as the American Association of Feline Practitioners now recommend twice yearly physical exams for all cats.  Cats 8 years and older should have screening tests for diseases such as hyperthyroidism, kidney insufficiency, high blood pressure and diabetes.

Dr. McGeorge recommends:
 
For cats under age 8 - physical exam and dental checkup twice a year

For cats age 8 and older - physical exam and dental checkup twice a year
                                  - laboratory screening tests for age-related diseases

With this program, many health problems which are not readily detected in other ways can be caught early on and appropriate steps taken to ensure continued well-being and a longer life for your cat.