|I am not old, I am experienced.|
Apparently the cat population, like the human one, is living longer.
International Cat Care says a cat is considered old if more than 15. That is the geriatric stage. This equals 76 in human terms. At 21, a cat is equal to a 100-year-old person in terms of age.
But what equals normal for an old cat? In a special, peer-reviewed issue of the J of Feline Medicine and Surgery, the experts broke it down.
In terms of cognitive ability, they defined a healthy aged cat as showing no signs of DISHA--disorientation, interaction changes, sleep/wake disturbances, house soiling, and changes in activity.
They also developed new blood and serum markers.
Why do this? First, it will provide a single resource for vets to provide the best care. And second, it will form the basis of more research--such as interventions for aging cats.
The researchers described this as a "labor of love." Yup, that may be another good reason.