How long do cats live? What is the lifespan of a cat? 

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 How long do cats live? You will see that answering this question will depend on several criteria. Moreover, one year of life for a cat is not equivalent to one year of life for a human (your 15-year-old cat is still 76 years old in human age). Indeed, a cat's longevity varies according to the breed and the environment in which it lives.

How long do cats live?

The answer is the question of “how long do cats live” is that; many go beyond the average life expectancy of 15 years:

For example, a third of the cats would be over 12 years old, and 18% would be over the age of 16.

Today, veterinarians commonly have cats over 20 years old in their practice.

In the majority of cases, domestic cats that live a long time have a home and are pampered by their master: they take good care of him, they look after them when they are sick, they are attentive to their needs, they watch over him, gives a diet well adapted for him, and above all they love them. This is an excellent recipe to make your cat happy and allow him to live a long life. In addition, advances in veterinary science allow our cats to live longer and longer.

Let's examine the answer to the question of how long do cats live by classifying cats.

how long do cats live
The life expectancy of the alley cat 

First of all, you have to know what alley cat means, there is the cat that is not purebred, which is the result of crossbreeding between two races, and the cat which lives outside and has no foyer.

Case N°1: the wild cat

Cats that live entirely outside have a life expectancy of about 5 years. They are much more exposed to health problems related to diseases because they have not received a vaccine. But also because they have to fight to survive and can fall prey to certain animals, such as dogs who don't like them.

Cats living on the street are prone to many diseases and malnutrition which considerably reduces their life expectancy. Generally, he cannot find enough to be satisfied and more easily develops diseases such as cat AIDS or scabies, which is very contagious from one cat to another. This is why their life expectancy is reduced and estimated at a maximum of 5 years.

Some people also hurt them, their life is difficult!!!

Case N°2: The alley cat who has a home

The alley cat that we know, which has no particular breed but has a home, has an average life expectancy of around 10 to 12 years, but it is very variable; it depends on the risks this feline takes when he goes hunting or runs after females.

The sterilized cat is much more likely to live a long time, 15 years on average; it takes less risk to try to reproduce and goes out less.

 The life expectancy of the apartment cat

Usually, the apartment or indoor cat will have a much better chance of living longer, between 15 and 20 years. This is because they are generally in good health, cared for, and vaccinated. Although, they have an excellent regular diet, which can be a problem, it is obesity that comes from the lack of physical activity and sometimes from gluttony. Hence the importance of playing with them, finding them games that will get them moving and controlling their food, and giving them the right dosage of daily cat food.

The apartment cat who is suddenly given the possibility of going out will probably not live beyond four years because he is not used to such a hard life. And it will become easy prey for other animals.

Indeed, it is in your best interest to give your feline companion food adapted to its needs so that it remains healthy as long as possible.

 In addition, by regularly taking him to the veterinarian for a check-up, you can easily detect the presence of a serious illness and treat it more quickly to prevent the animal's condition from worsening.

Whatever the breed of your cat, it is essential to take the time to choose the right food to offer it quality food. A portion of healthy and balanced food will allow him to live longer and better healthily.

The life expectancy of a sterilized cat

Spaying an animal has the power to increase your cat's lifespan. Indeed, the average life expectancy of a sterilized cat is 20 years. Whether your cat is a male or a female, sterilization is, therefore an intervention that has the advantage of increasing the longevity of your pet by 2 to 5 years.

 The life expectancy of purebred cats

The life expectancy of purebred cats is slightly lower than that of European cats (alley cats), but this varies according to the breed. The most extended lifespans are observed in the Sacred Birman cat, the British Shorthair, and the Main Coon. Conversely, the Siamese and the Ragdoll have a lower life expectancy than the average cat breed.

Finally, the life expectancy of the dwarf cat, a small cat that was first bred in the United States in the 1990s and resulting from a cross between a Munchkin and a Persian, is generally between 14 to 16 years.

The oldest cat in the world

The oldest cat, CREME PUFF, was 38 years old, he lived in the United States and died in 2005, which made human age 160 years!!!  

Some cats whose lifespan is remarkable:

Moun, another 34-year-old cat, a Carthusian cat who had to be put on a mattress at the end of his life because his bones would have broken at the slightest shock.

Scooter, a Siamese cat, turned 30 on May 9, 2016, he lives in Texas, and he is still alive! He had a lively life as he visited 45 American states with his mistress, he loves chicken and baths! Happy end of scooter life!

Sarah is 33 years old; she lived in New Zealand, was adopted at 20, lived with her new family for 13 years, and died of a heart attack.

Corduroy Age 26, he ed in Oregon, he was adopted at 7 years old, he and had a beautiful life full of love and freedom because his mistress let him do what he wanted.

In the Guinness World Records, the oldest living Burmese female cat is Kataleena, born on March 11, 1977.
how long do cats live

How old is your cat in human years?

Here is a comparison scale between human age and cat age

Cat Age Human Age
1 month 10 months
3 months 7 years
6 months 9 years
1 year 16 years
2 years 24 years
3 years 28 years
5 years 36 years
6 years 40 years
7 years 44 years
8 years 48 years
9 years 52 years
10 years 56 years
11 years 60 years
12 years 64 years
13 years 68 years
14 years 72 years
15 years 76 years
16 years 80 years
17 years 84 years
18 years 88 years
19 years 94 years
20 years 100 years

And so on after 18 years, we add a year of cats for 6 years of humans.


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Can a cat live longer if it has a companion?

There isn't a right or wrong answer to this question. It is unclear whether having a partner increases or decreases the life expectancy of a domestic cat.

This question is the subject of much debate. Some believe that having a life partner gives the cat companionship and someone to care for it, which helps prolong its life. Others think cats are independent animals and don't need the company of another living thing to live a long and healthy life. According to some veterinarians, cats that live with another animal (dog or cat) or a family of humans have a significantly longer life expectancy than those that roam outdoors alone. However, this does not mean that all cats living alone do not live very long.

Either way, cats bring happiness to our lives by being loving confidants and companions. It is an animal that is always there to purr and offer us its presence to snuggle up against. We can always count on them to be there for us, no matter what. This is why we must take care of them and do our best to meet their needs as much as possible. 

The life expectancy of a cat

The longevity of cats is getting longer and longer. However, it differs a lot according to different criteria such as the state of health of the animal, its breed, or its diet. It happens that some cats become very old if we take good care of them and care about their health and their diet.

What is the lifespan of a cat?

 The average life expectancy of a cat is between 12 to 14 years. However, many cats live over 15 thanks to a diet adapted to them and health monitoring by a veterinarian. Indeed, giving a diet adapted to the needs of your animal is very important to guarantee him a long life in good health.

In addition, veterinary monitoring is not a negligible point because a cat that is not regularly monitored is more likely to develop serious illnesses without its owner realizing it right away.

how long do cats live
Depending on the disease of his feline 


 Hyperthyroidism is a disease that affects older cats 10 years or older. It is, in fact, a disease that can compromise the longevity of your cat. To avoid this, some treatments can save your cat up to 2 years of life. Daily administration of anti-thyroid drugs can slow the disease and save your pet years of life. In addition, choosing specific foods for hyperthyroid cats can also improve the clinical condition of the affected cat and thus prolong his lifespan.

Cat tumor

If your cat has a tumor, his life expectancy may be more or less reduced depending on the stage and progress of the tumor. For a cat with stage 1 or 2 tumors, his life expectancy is about 8 months. On the other hand, 50% of cats with stage 4 or 5 tumors have a lifespan reduced to a maximum of 10 weeks.

Renal failure

 Kidney failure is a condition that can shorten your cat's life expectancy. However, with the right treatment and a specific diet for kidney problems, you can extend the life of your four-legged friend by around 3 years.

Kidney failure in cats


 Cat AIDS is an incurable disease of cats that greatly reduces their longevity. If the mother transmitted the virus, the life expectancy of the cat is then about three years. On the other hand, if the virus was contracted afterward, the cat can live up to 2 years longer.

Heart murmur

When diagnosed with a heart murmur, a cat with symptoms will see its lifespan reduced to less than 5 years, especially if it has thromboembolism. On the other hand, if the cat is asymptomatic, its duration can be more than five years thanks to a specific treatment.


 Lipidosis is generally cured well with appropriate treatment. Indeed, if the cat survives the first days of treatment, he has a 70% chance of getting out of it. In addition, if the condition is controlled, its vital prognosis is improved. It is also important to note that hepatic lipidosis generally does not recur.


A cat with fibrosarcoma can be life-threatening. Indeed, this disease's risk of recurrence is high, and the vital prognosis is often poor. 

Feline diabetes

 A cat with diabetes can live as long as a non-diabetic cat. Indeed, with the help of a good follow-up by your veterinarian and meticulous treatment with insulin, you will be able to stabilize the state of health of your cat and keep him in good health for longer.

The Most Deadly Diseases In Cats And Treatments( Detailed Information)

Cats can suffer from severe or life-threatening illnesses if not diagnosed and treated in time, especially when they are very young, old, or immunocompromised. In addition, many of these diseases are infectious and can be prevented with a proper vaccination program, while others can be diagnosed early during routine checkups at the veterinary clinic. Preventive medicine is, therefore, crucial to avoid the most deadly diseases in cats.

Here is the list of the seven most fatal diseases in cats: 


Cancer is a fatal disease in cats. It is not only disease with a high mortality rate, but it is also one of the most common in cats. Cancer, or uncontrolled cell proliferation due to a genetic mutation of one or more cell types in a particular location, can be truly deadly, especially cancers with the ability to spread through the blood to other nearby organs such as lungs, kidneys, or bone (metastases). The Flint Animal Cancer Center says that one in five cats will develop cancer during their lifetime, especially when they are older.

In cats, the most common tumors are lymphomas, associated or not with the feline leukemia virus, squamous cell carcinoma, mammary tumor, intestinal adenocarcinoma, fibrosarcoma, osteosarcoma, and mastocytoma.



Treatment for cancer in cats depends on the type of cancer and whether or not there are distant metastases. In the case of resectable tumors, treatment will consist of complete surgical removal with or without chemotherapy.

If metastases have not yet appeared, the best option is chemotherapy using cancer-specific cytotoxic drugs. For feline lymphoma, several protocols combine these drugs to kill rapidly dividing tumor cells, such as the CHOP or COP protocol. For other cancers, such as squamous cell carcinoma, cryosurgery can be used, while for others the use of radiotherapy or electro-chemotherapy can also improve the life expectancy of the affected cat.

If metastases are present and the cancer is already very advanced, the prognosis is very bad and many cats will not tolerate chemotherapy, because they are particularly weak and their organs are very affected, in these cases only symptomatic treatment may be given to try to improve their quality of life.

how long do cats live
Feline leukemia

Feline leukemia is an infectious disease caused by a retrovirus, the feline leukemia virus, which can integrate into the genome of feline cells, remaining latent for a long time and without symptoms in cats.

However, under certain conditions, the virus can reactivate, causing clinical signs in cats resulting from immunosuppression, reproductive signs, hematological signs, tumors (lymphomas and leukemias), immune-mediated diseases,d alterations in cells of the hematopoietic system, while in other cases, after infection, an acute form occurs that can quickly kill the cat, especially those under 5 years old.


Feline leukemia therapy aims to maintain the cat with a good quality of life and to manage immunosuppression and pathologies caused by the virus. Thus, symptomatic treatment with multivitamins, appetite stimulants, or anabolics, the use of antibiotics for a longer period in case of infections due to immunosuppression, blood transfusions in case of severe anemia, increasing the cat's defenses with antivirals and immunomodulators such as feline omega interferon (dose of 10⁶ IU/kg per day for 5 days), chemotherapy if tumors are present, corticosteroids in mediated diseases immune and specific therapy for other pathologies that may occur.

FIV or Feline Immunodeficiency

Feline immunodeficiency, also called FIV or cat AIDS, is another fatal disease of cats, whether stray or domestic because it is very infectious. It is caused by a lentivirus which is transmitted by very close contact through blood and saliva, bites, and wounds and is particularly common in stray cats due to fights over females or territories.

After infection, the virus produces viremia (virus in the blood) which causes an immune response in the cat, after which it goes into a subclinical phase that can last for years, but gradually destroys the cat's CD4+ T cells until their level reaches a minimum, in which case acquired immunodeficiency syndrome or AIDS appears, making the cat highly susceptible to infections and immune-mediated, oral and respiratory diseases, and dramatically increasing mortality rates.


As with the leukemia virus, there is also no specific medicine against this virus, the aim of treatment being to stabilize the cat, maintain a good quality of life and properly manage the complications and consequences of immunosuppression.

The use of recombinant feline omega interferon may also be useful for its immunomodulatory and antiviral properties, as well as the use of vitamin complexes, including evening primrose oil. Secondary infections must be controlled quickly with antibiotic therapy, which is often prolonged due to immunosuppression.

Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis

Feline viral rhinotracheitis is a fatal disease of cats, it is caused by feline herpes virus type I (VHF-1), microorganism whitehats the ability to remain latent in the cells of the infected cat and which is transmitted by secretions between cats, contaminated objects such as clothes or hands.

It usually causes symptoms affecting the upper respiratory tract, with a runny nose, sneezing, rhinitis, fever, conjunctivitis, keratitis, corneal ulcers, protrusion of the third eyelid, and corneal sequestrations, which are not fatal in immunocompetent individuals. However, young kittens are particularly vulnerable, as the virus can cause pneumonia with severe viremia leading to rapid death.


The treatment of feline viral herpes disease is based on the use of antiviral drugs, the most effective being famciclovir; the prescribed dose should be 40 mg/kg for three weeks, this dose being higher (62.5 mg/kg ) in kittens and cats with renal insufficiency.

In the presence of corneal ulcers, tobramycin should be used as a broad-spectrum topical antibiotic, triple ocular antibiotic, or more selective antibiotic for infected or complicated ulcers. Corneal surgery should be performed when ulcerative keratitis is chronic and corneal sequestration has appeared. Anti-inflammatories and L-lysine can also be given to inhibit arginine, which is necessary for virus replication, although more recent studies cast doubt on their effectiveness.

Renal Failure

Kidney disease is another fatal disease of cats, with chronic kidney failure being especially common in cats over seven years old and acute kidney disease in young cats. It follows poisoning, dehydration, infection, or various illnesses. More or less, the loss of renal filtration capacity is severe because the toxins filtered by the kidney remain in the body, leading to an increase in blood pressure and electrolyte imbalances, causing damage and clinical signs associated with who can end the life of your little feline.


Treatment for kidney disease depends on whether the disease is acute or chronic. Thus, the treatment of the acute form includes the following elements:

Control of dehydration by fluid therapy.

Added calcium gluconate or sodium bicarbonate to control potassium.

Control vomiting and nausea with antiemetics.

Treat pyelonephritis (kidney infection) with antibiotics.

Administer force-feeding to anorexic cats.

Peritoneal dialysis or hemodialysis in case of severe renal insufficiency.

On the other hand, the treatment of chronic renal failure should include the following therapy:

Control of proteinuria with angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors (benazepril or enalapril).

Restriction of dietary phosphorus or use of phosphorus binders and use of renal diet in advanced stages.

Forced nutrition in anorexic cats.

Treatment of hypertension with amlodipine.

Potassium supplementation in advanced stages and low phosphorus cats.

Treatment of severe anemia with erythropoietin.

Control of dehydration by fluid therapy.

Infectious Peritonitis

Feline infectious peritonitis, or FIP, is the deadliest infectious disease in cats and the one with the poorest prognosis. It is a fatal disease in almost all cases and there is no effective commercially available treatment. It is caused by the feline enteric coronavirus when it mutates, which occurs in approximately 20% of cats infected with this intestinal virus. When this mutation occurs, the virus is not only maintained in the intestine but can infect macrophages and monocytes, which are immune system cells and are distributed throughout the body.

Depending on the competence of the cat's cell-mediated immune system, the disease may not occur, it may take a dry form with the formation of pus granulomas in the organs, compromising their proper functioning, or a much more serious wet form. and rapid in which effusions of fluid form in the abdominal and/or chest cavity of the affected cat.


There is no cure for this virus and the outcome is usually fatal, but symptomatic treatment should always be attempted with a high protein diet, use of proteolytic enzymes, vitamin complexes, drainage of effusions into the case of a wet FIP, the use of corticosteroids to depress the humoral immune system and reduce vascular consequences, the use of cellular system stimulators such as feline recombinant omega interferon or the injection of dexamethasone into the cavities to prevent effusion.

In recent years, two active ingredients have been studied which seem likely to be effective treatments for FIP: the 3C protease inhibitor GC376 and the nucleoside analog GS-441524, the latter seeming to be more promising. However, as we said, they are still in the study phase.


Although rare thanks to vaccination, the rabies virus is a fatal disease for cats and can be one of the feline diseases that can be transmitted to humans. Rabies is a deadly zoonosis of great importance to humanity. Cats can suffer from rabies and transmit it to humans. The virus is transmitted through saliva following a bite from an infected animal and travels to the central nervous system, causing flaccid paralysis due to lower motor neuron syndrome, which progresses to paralysis of the upper motor neuron and cortex, causing encephalitis and, ultimately, death.


All rabies infections lead to death and in animals, including cats, treatment is prohibited, always by euthanasia, because of the great risk to public health it represents, since it can perfectly well be transmitted to the human body. man and other animals.

As we can see, these fatal diseases in cats often have no specific treatment. Preventive medicine, therefore, becomes the best option to avoid them or, at least, to diagnose them as soon as possible.

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