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Adult Cat Age?

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Hi Y'all,

I don't know if this is the right forum, but I had a random question about the ages of cats. What age is considered "adult"? I know my cousin's cat had kittens at like 10 or 11 months old (under a year) and I always considered 1 year to be "full grown" though I have no evidence as to why I thought that.

When I got my first cat she was 1 1/2 and seemed like she already had a set of behaviors and stuff built in which is maybe where I got this assumption. She was a pretty mellow cat from the beginning, (with her wild streaks of course), loved to sleep and be a lap cat.

On the other hand, my "kitten" is 4years old now and is still VERY active and plays and causes trouble but he's starting to *finally* mellow out a bit where he will actually sit on your lap at the computer or while watching TV. And he does sleep a lot more now than a year ago. =)

Anyway, I'm wondering b/c a friend of mine wants to get a cat but her husband doesn't want a young cat so they are picking one 2 years old-ish with the idea that 1yo cat will still be too much to handle. So, what's the difference btwn a 1yo and a kitten and a 1yo and a 2yo? Just random ruminations.

Thanks!
post #2 of 18
I think two is when a cat is really beginning to calm down. One they are still a little kittenish. I don't think I can really choose a favorite cat age, but voted 1-4 because Wessie is two.
post #3 of 18
I voted 1-4 because that's the ages my cats are now, and their current age is always my favorite.

Your poll question doesn't really match the question in your message. Generally, a kitten is considered to be anything up to a year old. However, larger breeds will continue to grow for the first two years or so while smaller breeds will be full grown at a year to a year and a half. If you're showing purebred cats, the day they turn 8 months they move from the kitten class to the adult classes. So I guess the answer to your question about when a cat is full-grown is "It depends".

If your friends want to adopt an older cat, it's more likely that the personality will be set, so they might have a better idea what they're getting.
post #4 of 18
I really don't have a favorite age. But I guess it would be 1-4 years. I don't think cats fully mature or grow up until at least two. I just enjoy the years they are still frisky and feisty. Although, some cats remain this way until much older as well. I can hope
post #5 of 18
I didn't vote in the poll, because I love different things about all of them.

I think we all kind of think of that "1 year old mark" as the difference between kitten and adult cat. I think that is because they're still growing, and so feeding guidelines are such that they need more calories and protein.

It's interesting, because just like humans, cats reach sexual maturity before they're fully grown, and just like humans, they keep growing even when they're not exactly "kittens" anymore.

I do think their personalities are fully developed by then, so when adopting a cat, it's much easier to "know" what "manner" of cat you're adopting if they're past that one year mark.

And as to the activity level... that is also pretty personality-dependent. A lot of cats do start calming down after 18 months/1 year... but again, just like with humans, I know plenty of people that continued partying hard into their late 20s and into their 30s.

In equating a cat's age to human years, from a medical/physical/life expectancy perspective, they're the human equivalent of 24 by age 1, and then they age 4 years for each human year.
post #6 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by catbehaviors View Post
I think two is when a cat is really beginning to calm down.
Please tell that to my Stumpy, who turns 16 (years) in a few weeks. I caught him chasing a ball frantically around the house the other day, and he still does the midnight crazies sprints around the house. He didn't really start to calm down until a few years ago.

I picked middle age as my favorite age. For the most part, they are beyond their kitten crazies, and I probably get closest to them in this age range. They are comfortable about who they are and I build a stronger bond to them by using their personalities to enhance our relationship.

I love them all dearly when they pass 11 years old, but honestly, their age begins to frighten me. I've lost too many cats in the 12-13 year old range to be anything but cautious with them.
post #7 of 18
I voted 5-10. Most of my cats are in that range. I also like that age because we know each other so well that we communicate just by eye contact. Like Amy I also love them when they're 11+ but the thought that they're nearer to leaving us is truly scary.
post #8 of 18
OMG! You have just reminded me that Persi will be 5 next month. And that is how long I have been on TCS. My other cat Alley is probably around 7 and she is showing her age but Persi is just as young and frisky as he was four years ago. I think breed has something to do with it for sure. According to one site, Persi can live from 15-20 years being a Persian. I do not know what breed Alley is but she is calico in color. We have many stairs in this house and Persi races up and down the stairs while Alley gingerly takes things a step at a time. BTW, I base how long Persi might live based on the fact that he is AN INDOOR ONLY cat and has never been outside in his life.

Well, since Persi is turning five next month, I voted for the 5-10 selection. That's where my cats will be on April 16. (I can remember my cats birthday but not my own.)
post #9 of 18
I voted 11+ because my favorite cats are the ones that live long and healthy lives.
post #10 of 18
I can't even vote because I love'em all, despite kittens being pests. Mine range from 8 months to 11 years and the old guy (Da Lip) still put the run on them all today when he sat on the stepladder and swatted every cat that went under.
post #11 of 18
I don't know if I have a favorite age.

Holly is 1- so she's still a pest at times But it is cute to have a cat who still loves to play and get into trouble.

Sneaky and Jasper are 10. This is kind of a nice age too- they like to "chill out" a lot. Jasper especially has come out of his shell in the last 4 weeks (we took him in for someone who couldn't keep him) and he just wants you to love on him.

Sneaky "chills" out a lot too. Not as affectionate though as Jasper. If she'd stayed an "only" I think she might have been more affectionate than she is. But alas- she's kind of "stuck" with 2 siblings whether she likes it or not.
She's had her own couple of scares- about 6 months ago she had something that looked like a seizure- but it hasn't happened since.

And the "senior" years- IMHO is older than 12 are pretty nice too. Scary though. We lost a cat at 17- he had kidney issues. Mistoflees got affectionate when he was older. But he gave us some scares as well- like the time we thought he was having a seizure.

Cheryl
post #12 of 18
Are we talking physical age or behavioral age here?
post #13 of 18
My oldest is 7 so it is hard for me to judge. It seems to depend on the cat but they are still pretty crazy in the younger years. I have a wild 3 year old.
post #14 of 18
I prefer them out of kitten stage definitely! My cat is probably around 16 or older and really hasn't changed any over the years, she still zooms all around the house early morning/night, comes running to the door when I come home and lets me know when she wants food!
post #15 of 18
Favorite is a kitten if the cat lives with someone else as their much loved pet and I get to visit .
If I am living with the cat 5-10 sounds great.
post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momofmany View Post
Please tell that to my Stumpy, who turns 16 (years) in a few weeks. I caught him chasing a ball frantically around the house the other day, and he still does the midnight crazies sprints around the house.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoingPostal View Post
My cat is probably around 16 or older and really hasn't changed any over the years, she still zooms all around the house early morning/night, comes running to the door when I come home and lets me know when she wants food!
That's brilliant!
post #17 of 18
Thread Starter 
Thanks all for commenting! I loved all your answers!
post #18 of 18
5-10 is what I voted. My oldest who will be ten this year, is so easy. Then again, I think it depends on the cat. The middle one is the best cat we have. We love them all the same, but he's just so good. It seems impossible for that to happen. He's 3 this month. And the youngest, whom we are having problems with all of a sudden, is adorable and funny. So they're great at all ages. Just depends on the kitty.
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