VCA Animal Hospitals

Keep Senior Cats Active and Comfortable

- Provided by


Q. How can I make my senior cat more comfortable? She seems to be moving more gingerly and doesn't jump up and down as easily.

A. As your cat gets older, slower and less active, the key thing to remember is that she still needs exercise. Regular, gentle play is truly one of the secrets to feline health and happiness. As your cat ages, continue to give her a minute or two of play here and there throughout the day. Batting at a big peacock feather or pouncing on a catnip mouse will help to keep her muscles, joints and reflexes in good condition. And don't forget the benefits of "brain games" — use food puzzles to keep her body moving and her mind active.

Above all, don’t let her put on the pounds. Extra weight puts more pressure on your cat’s joints and clogs up the efficient engine of her internal systems. If anything, keep your senior cat on the lean side of normal.

Make Home a Comfortable Place to Be

Choose cat beds that are well-padded and warm. If your cat has arthritis, consider adding egg crate-type padding for extra cushioning. Offering a couple of different beds in separate rooms, ideally in sunny spots, will give your cat ways to both catch her naps and stay close to you. If you do have multiple beds, try mixing up the fabrics — you may find your cat’s favorites change depending on the weather and her mood.

Give her a step up. Many companies make stairs and ramps to help pets get to their usual favorite places. These are often lightweight, well-designed and collapsible, or attractive enough (in the case of stair-steps) to leave as a permanent part of the decor.

Of course, you also need to make sure your cat is in good health. Getting older isn't optional, but suffering from age is often preventable. Work with your veterinarian to make sure all your senior cat's health issues are being treated or managed.


General Practice

We have over 540 animal hospitals in 41 states that are staffed by more than 2,000 fully qualified, dedicated and compassionate veterinarians, with more than 200 being board-certified specialists. The nationwide VCA family of general practice hospitals give your pet the very best in medical care, providing a full range of general medical and surgical services as well as specialized treatments*: Wellness, Spay/neuter, Advanced diagnostic services (MRI/CT Scan), Internal medicine, Oncology, Ophthalmology, Dermatology, Cardiology, Neurology, Boarding, Grooming

*services may vary by location.

Our family of pet hospitals stands out by delivering the greatest resources in order provide the highest quality care available for your pets. By maintaining the highest standards of pet health care available anywhere, we emphasize prevention as well as healing. We provide continuing education programs to our doctors and staff and promote the open exchange of professional knowledge and expertise. And finally, we have established a consistent program of procedures and techniques, proven to be the most effective in keeping pets healthy.

Find a VCA General Care Animal Hospital near you:


See all VCA Animal Hospitals >


Specialty Care

Sometimes sick or injured pets need the care of a veterinary medical specialist. When that happens, VCA specialty hospitals work closely with the general practitioner veterinarians who refer cases to us in order to provide seamless veterinary care to your pet. When your pet is facing any kind of serious illness or injury, our specialty referral hospitals will provide the compassionate and expert care your beloved pet needs.

Our goal is to make sure that when you and your pet are in need that you have access to board certified specialists who are up to date on the very latest developments in their field. In our state of the art hospitals, our specialists also have access to the most sophisticated diagnostic and treatment tools and techniques from ultrasonography and endoscopy to CAT scans and even MRI.

We have twenty-eight specialty hospitals across the US so there may be one near you. Our specialized services include: cardiology, critical care, dentistry, dermatology, internal medicine, neurology, oncology, ophthalmology, radiology and surgery.

Find a VCA Specialty Care Animal Hospital near you:


See all VCA Animal Hospitals >


Emergency Care

In case of emergency, please call us immediately. If it is after hours, check with a local animal hospital emergency clinic.