From an early age to an advanced age, your cat will experience many physical and behavioural changes that will, among other things, change its nutritional needs. In this article, I try to answer the question: When do cats stop growing. One of the most important breakthroughs in the life of your cat is the transition from a charming, fluffy kitten to an equally beloved adult cat. Another important change in the life of many cats is castration, which requires some additional adjustment of the diet, including, most likely, a reduction in the number of calories given to him. With all these changes, it will be easier for both you and your cat when you understand the changes that await you. If you prepare properly, you will be calmer and will ensure your favorite health and good shape at every stage of life.
The Life Cycle of a Cat
- Months 0-6: Baby teeth start to fall out and are replaced by adult teeth; this process is usually complete by 6 months of age.
- Months 6-9: Kittens go through sexual maturation.
- Months 9-12: A kitten is almost fully grown.
- 1 to 2 years: Kittens are just reaching adulthood. Also known as the junior stage, your cat still hasn’t reached full maturity and is still growing.
- 3 to 6 years: Kittens are socially and behaviorally mature.
- 7 to 10 years: Between the ages of 7 and 10, your cat is in what’s called the mature adult stage. Much like humans, cats become less active as they age, and they’re more prone to gain weight and develop health issues.
- 11 years+: Cats at this age are in their senior phase. More time will be spent sleeping, and there’ll be little to no exercise.
When do cats stop growing?
We can divide the life of a cat into the same four main stages as a human-childhood, youth, adulthood and old age-but their relationship is different than in humans. Let us compare, for example, the whole period of growing up, that is, childhood and youth, with our four-legged friends and with us. In humans, the ratio of the length of this stage to the length of adult life is about 1:4, while in cats it is about 1:15-20. Of course, we are talking here about animals surrounded by the caring care of their owners, not about free-living cats, which die as quickly as they grow up.
Feline childhood passes almost unnoticed, passing into youth and adulthood. Already at the age of six months, our cats are sexually mature (although this usually occurs a little later), with the children becoming cat teenagers. Interestingly, as in humans, the achievement of sexual maturity by a cat does not mean the end of its physical development.
Rapid growth and early maturation is biologically justified. Thanks to this, in a short time the cat can give birth to their own offspring, which is beneficial for the survival and development of the species.
And the cat’s old age? It doesn’t last long, either, compared to a cat’s lifespan. In our cats, as in other animals, pronounced signs of old age appear shortly before death. Thanks to this furrier longer retains physical fitness, and this in nature is very important. The senile old man is not able to hunt and defend against enemies, so he quickly dies. Therefore, in slow-living cats, old age is probably the shortest period in their life. Much shorter than in furry animals, which are lucky to have a caring person.
When are cats full grown?
In the first few days, kittens can increase their birth weight many times. Later, however, the rate of their growth gradually decreases, until finally ceases. The average representative of this species grows to his first birthday. The completion of the first year of life does not always mean the end of physical development, which is especially true for cats, which can still develop the typical male tertiary sexual characteristics, such as clearly outlined cheeks.
Representatives of some cat breeds develop a little longer than others. For example, Russian blue cats, Norwegian forest cats and Maine Coons can be mentioned here. Male Russian blue cats full physical development can reach only after the completion of two years of life! Long for such small animals. Therefore, some breeders suggest to keep them longer on the feed for kittens, although this, according to the producers, is given to cats until the first year of life.
How to tell when a cat has reached its full size?
The most important factor that determines the size of each cat are, of course, genes. Therefore, we can observe differences in size and body structure between different races. Among the smallest, we can mention, for example, dwelfs, Lambkins or Singaporean cats – some of their representatives do not weigh more than 2 kg – from the largest ones, for example, Norwegian Forest ragdolls or maine Coons – in which 8 or 10 kg of weight is not unusual.
In cats, however, there is not as great a difference in size between different breeds as in dogs, in which the smallest representatives of the species would fit freely in the snouts of the largest. Interestingly, weight or height is usually not included even in the standards developed for thoroughbred cats-completely different from the standards of dog breeds.
In addition to these genes, the size of our cats can also be influenced by other factors, such as diseases that can interfere with the proper development of their organisms. Diet is also important-the lack of certain ingredients or their excess changes the rate of growth.
How long does a cat live?
It is impossible to give an unambiguous answer to the question of how long cats live. Why? Because there are huge differences in life expectancy between representatives of this species; between free-living cats, and typically domestic cat. We can easily guess that a huge role is played here-already mentioned-by the caring care of the owners, not only genetic predisposition.
The longest living cat was Puss, who lived to 36 years and Creme Puff, who managed to live to 38 years! It is worth adding that veterinary science is constantly developing, so our cats live longer and longer. The statistics for free-living Cats look much worse. Life expectancy is only 4 to 8 years. It is worth adding that from 4 to 8 years usually live the most fortunate, because most kittens do not live even a year. They have been affected by illness, malnutrition, road accidents, stress, bad people and fights with other cats. The truth is, the safest place for a cat is in our house and it should never be released in bulk. This poses a huge threat to it, as well as harming the environment, because cats are responsible for killing many endangered species. Leading cats on a leash is becoming increasingly popular, so they can safely explore the world. (Although it is worth adding that the cat does not have to leave the apartment at all, unlike the dog.)