When Do Cats Stop Growing? Tips On How To Care For Your Kittens
To get the best care of your cats, you need to understand the stages they go through as they grow from kitten to adult cat. Every cat is different and some breeds grow at different speeds and for different lengths of time than others.
Here are some top tips on how to take care of your growing cat and when it can reach its full potential.
When do cats stop growing?
This time varies from cat to cat and, more precisely, from breed to breed. In general, however, owners can expect their cats to stop growing between 12 and 18 months.
Speaking to Newsweek, Dr. Sarah Elliott, UK charity Cats Protection Central Veterinary Officer: “Kittens typically reach adult weight by 12 months of age, although some larger breeds, such as the Maine Coon, take a few months longer to stop growing.
“Weaning can begin at four to six weeks of age.”
For some cats that continue to grow after 12 months, the growth rate is much slower after that point.
As a result, even if cats continue to grow for a short period of time after 12 months, this won’t be a big change.
By around two years of age, most cats are considered fully grown, which means that their growth would have stopped completely.
Important milestones for growing cats
Understanding your cat’s growth cycle is important in order to optimally groom a cat at different times.
From the third to the fourth month, their milk teeth fall out and are replaced by adult teeth, after which the kittens become sexually mature by four to nine months, which Dr. Elliott indicates as the time for castration.
She said, “Kittens lose their baby teeth and also reach puberty around four months of age. This is the age at which Cats Protection recommends that owners castrate their kittens to avoid unwanted pregnancies.”
A kitten is almost fully grown by nine to twelve months before it is considered fully grown and reaches its prime at two years of age.
According to Pumpkin, by around 7-10 years of age, the cat is fully mature and can grow a little in the abdominal area, which can be helped by gentle movement.
Cats enter their senior stage by the age of 11, by which time some age-related problems may arise, and by 15 cats have reached the geriatric stage where they can suffer from tooth loss and are much less active.
Some of the aging signs in cats, according to Dr. Elliott are:
- Changes in social and ecological interaction
- Changes in sleeping / waking behavior, e.g. B. more sleep during the day and restlessness at night
- House pollution
In addition, older cats can suffer from constipation, dental problems, and deafness.
How to take care of growing kittens
According to the UK charity Royal Society of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA), there are many things to consider when caring for kittens, including feeding, proper hygiene, grooming, socializing, training in the litter box, and maintaining a suitable environment for cats.
Before a young kitten is brought home, it must be vaccinated, trained in the use of a litter box, and socialized by introducing the kitten to people and new environments.
Dr. Elliott says that you can socialize your cat by introducing them to different types of people, from babies to adults, being gently touched and handled, and helping them get used to hearing different noises.
It’s important to prepare your home as well by providing toys and space for the kittens to move around in, remove hazards, and even bring a blanket from your kitten’s first home to acclimate them.
Pet owners also need to make sure they see a veterinarian and purchase pet insurance to ensure their cat receives appropriate professional care when needed.
In the early stages of a kitten’s life, eight to twelve weeks, they will need small, regular meals that use similar or similar foods that they previously ate in their previous homes.
Dr. Elliott added, “Kittens should have access to fresh water and commercial kitten food to ensure their nutritional needs are met.
“Your food should be checked and replaced at least four times a day. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and avoid giving more than the recommended daily amount as this can lead to obesity.”
They must also be introduced to other animals, people, environments such as cat carriers, and regular practices such as grooming and health checks.
It’s also good at this point to create boundaries and routines for cats to help them understand good and bad behavior.
From the 12-week period onwards, owners should ask their veterinarian about castration and castration and, if necessary, deworming.
It is also important to play with your kitten and keep kitten training routines in place so that it can come to you when you call.
Since waxing is tiring, it is also important to give kittens rest and rest after training.
From six months old, kittens are still learning, so keep building routines and positive experiences for your cat.
At this point, cats may need to switch to a different diet as they will likely have stopped growing after a year.
Dr. Elliott said, “The fastest growth occurs in the first four months, but we recommend that owners feed a kitten diet until they are one year old.
“After that, it’s best to gradually switch to an adult maintenance diet because your cat will no longer need the extra calories from the kitten diet.”
File photo of Milly, a 13 week old kitten waiting to be housed at The Society for Abandoned Animals Sanctuary in Sale, Manchester. Follow our guide to caring for kittens as they grow.
Christopher Furlong / Getty Images