As our beloved moggies grow, joint stiffness can be part and parcel of the ageing process. And as loving feline owners, we naturally want to do all we can to help. If your cat’s got stiff, creaky joints, here’s how you could adapt your home to keep them feeling comfortable…
Rethink the litter box location
Cats tend to use their litter trays more regularly as they get older. They also tend to get stiffer and slower, which makes getting around the house harder than it used to be. That said, it’s a good idea to think about the placement of his or her litter tray. Consider getting a second tray if you’ve got an upstairs, so your moggy has one on each floor. And if yours is tucked tidily in a corner somewhere – for example, in a utility room – make sure it’s easy to get to and there’s no clutter to clamber over.
Make favourite spots more accessible
Keep an eye on your cat’s movements as they age. Is there a once-loved spot they now seem to be avoiding? It could be because it’s not as accessible to them as it once was. For instance, is there a sunny windowsill usually reserved for afternoon snoozing, that’s not seen much kitty shut-eye lately? It may be because your feline is finding it too much hard work to reach. Prop up a chair, box or ramp and, et voila! Naps resume.
Raise food and drink bowls
If you haven’t already, invest in a raised set-up for eating and drinking. Elevating your cat’s bowls will reduce the strain of bending down, which can affect the spine and hips. It also aids swallowing and digestion.
Avoid home makeovers
Animals can get confused as they age, so it’s important to keep as much normality as possible within the home. While we’re not suggesting you put the back-burner on any and all decorating, we would advise against regularly switching round your house layout and furniture.
Invest in an Orthopaedic bed
As your feline gets older and things start to feel stiffer, having a thick, squishy, cosy bed to curl up in at night is all the more important. Orthopaedic cat beds are designed with dense padding, which moulds to your cat’s body, cushioning the joints. Lovely.
As always, we love hearing from you. Show us how you’re adapting your home to meet the needs of your older cat, by tagging us in your snaps on Facebook and Instagram! Want a sure-fire way to help your senior cat with stiff joints? Take a look at our supplements range here.