Friendship Animal Hospital, P.C.

9825 S. Mason Rd., Suite 150
Richmond, TX 77406

(281)239-6500

www.friendshipah.com

SENIOR CAT PREVENTATIVE CARE GUIDELINES

CLASSIFICATION BY AGE

Nutrition and Weight Management

Frequency and Calories

  • Feeding small meals frequently increases digestive availability of nutrients
  • Adjust calories based on body condition score

 

Water intake

  • Increased fresh water intake is important as older cats are more prone to conditions that predispose to dehydration and subsequent constipation
  • Consider offering canned food
  • Use multiple water dishes
  • Tuna juice ice cubes
  • Water added to dry food
  • Drinking fountains

 

If a diet change is needed

  • Gradual changes over weeks to months may be needed
  • Offer the new food as a choice, rather than mixing it with the current food
  • Appetite stimulants may occasionally be indicated
  • Consider feeding a variety of quality canned and dry foods
  • Consider placing food in a variety of places around the house to encourage smaller, frequent meals.

 

Environmental Enrichment and Quality of Life

 

Keeping cats inside protects them from a variety of injuries and infectious disease and makes it easier to monitor for subtle changes.

  • Enriching the environment or allowing cats to be in a strictly supervised outdoor environment or enclosure is key to providing quality of life.
  • Provide companionship with regular human interaction
  • As chronic illnesses become more common in these age groups, it becomes more important to be vigilant for control of pain and distress and to monitor for quality of life.
  • Visit the web site for the Indoor Cat Initiative at www.vet.ohio-state.edu/indoorcat for more information.