Over the Rainbow Bridge: How Long Do Cats Live?


It’s a sad fact of life that our furry friends are going to leave our lives sooner or later. Knowing that eventually, you’re going to lose your companion is the only downside to pet ownership. 

If you have a cat, you might wonder what to expect. How long do cats live?

Let’s find out. That way, you’ll know when to begin to prepare for your feline to get ready to cross to the next life.

How Long Do Cats Live?

Most cats have a lifespan of 10 to 15 years.

That sounds a bit low, doesn’t it?

Well, this number applies to all cats rather than just well-cared for felines. It’s not just old age that kills our pets, but a combination of factors. 

Disease, cars, and predatory animals – all of these are factored into that same number, which means it’s a bit off in the long run. After all, many people have had cats that have lived over 20 years.

In fact, the world record holder for feline lifespan is a whopping 30 years old.

Of course, that kitty is also a major exception, which is why he holds the record. Instead, a well-cared for cat that doesn’t develop any serious conditions over the course of their life could live for 15 to 18 years.

That’s primarily for indoor cats, however, as outdoor cats are more exposed to parasites like fleas and ticks and other animals. The average lifespan for an outdoor cat is 10 to 12 years if they make it to old age.

Of course, this involves optimal care, good genetics for your cat, and making sure they make it to the vet no matter the cost.

Feline Aging

As your cat ages, their bodies begin to go into decline. It’s a natural part of their lifespan, but it can be quite troublesome for those who own the feline.

The symptoms of a cat aging are similar to those that a human goes through. Joints will ache, vision will decline, the immune system will become less robust, and their minds will become less sharp.

Aging is just as hard for them as it is for us.

It’s important to make sure that you adjust to your cat’s changing needs as they approach their twilight years.

In the case of cats that have reached the point where they’re constantly in pain and can’t function anymore, there are companies like Peaceful Pathways For Pets, LLC that offer in-home euthanasia services. That way, your pet will be comfortable while they pass humanely.

Enjoy Your Time

It’s a question that all of us have asked: how long do cats live?

And the truth is that even if they lived for 50 years, it really wouldn’t be enough time to truly enjoy our pet’s company to the fullest.

Of course, that doesn’t mean we can’t try. If you’re interested in learning more about your pet, check out our other blog posts for more tips and advice.