Behavior Pet Facts Cat To Human Years: How Your Pet’s Age Compares To Yours

Cat To Human Years: How Your Pet’s Age Compares To Yours

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The normal assumption of seven ‘cat years’ equaling one ‘human calendar year’ is invalid. An alternative determination of the age of your cat in human years can be acquired.

General Consensus

The general scientific agreement is that, for the first two years of a cat’s life, each month is equal to one human year. After that, one cat year is equivalent to four human years.

Summarizing the cat age calculator:

Cat Age Human Age
6 months 6 years
24 months (2 years) 24 years
From this point going forward, 1 cat year = 4 human years
4 years 32 years
10 years 56 years


Cat Life Expectancy

The life expectancy of cats varies, generally, indoor cats outlive their outdoor counterparts. Indoor cats survive between 16 and 18 years of age, some reach 20 – equivalent to 96 human years.

You’ll generally find indoor cats have high-quality balanced diets with regular health checks, enhancing their lifespan.

Outdoor cats are faced with risks from the elements and clashes with other animals. Ranging from territorial debacles to being preyed on by larger predators, or accidentally hit by cars.

The Guinness World Record for the oldest cat ever is held by Crème Puff, born in 1967 and died in 2005, an impressive 38 years, or 168 human years. It’s owner, Jake Perry, also owned the previous titleholder, Grandpa Rex Allen. Some cat breeds are predisposed to outlive others.

Explore the average lifespan of an indoor cat by clicking the link here. 

Pointers To A Cat’s Age

Your vet can help you establish an approximate age. However, there are some tell-tale signs you can use to indicate the age and health of the cat:

1. Cat’s teeth

The milk teeth first appear when the kitten is between 2–4 weeks old, and the permanent teeth will start showing when the cat reaches four months of age.

The arrival of yellow stains on some of the cat’s teeth is indicative of tartar. The probability is that you’re dealing with a one-year-old cat, two at most.

Stains on all teeth indicate a 3–5 years old cat. Naturally, senior cats usually have a couple of missing teeth, with this tending to occur when the cat is between 10 and 15 years old.

Keep in mind the presence of alternative issues causing tooth loss, such as periodontal disease – which affects all cats.

2. Look at the eyes

Cats over 12 years old frequently have a crackly iris and the instigation of cloudiness in their eyes.

Senior cats also demonstrate tearing and discharge from the eyes. A young pet with these symptoms points to an underlying condition, it needs checking by the vet.

3. Kitty’s coat

Unsurprisingly, Cat fur adapts concurrent with aging, hence why young cats typically have fine and soft coats. Older ones, develop thicker coats and coarse fur, frequently with grey patches.

White and brown cat in close up photography. Part of the "Cat To Human Years: How Your Pet’s Age Compares To Yours" article.
Photo by Sergey Semin on Unsplash

4. The muscle tone

Younger cats are more active, facilitating muscle definition. Creating routine exercise oportunities is a fundamental factor to cat longevity.

However, as they age activity levels reduce. This results in a decreased amount of muscle. The result is visible bones; specifically shoulder blades protruding, or excess skin hanging.


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