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Do female cats live as long as male?

Posted by linnea56 (My Page) on
Wed, Feb 27, 13 at 12:00

I have only had female. My cat is 13 ½, and this is a record for any cat I’ve had. She had a stroke (due to a parasite) when she was 8, and I thought she would not last long. Surprise! She had to re-learn everything, but she did, with activity limitations, and is mostly blind. My daughter said the cat was just re-booted, so we should start counting her age over again dating from the stroke (joke).

She does very little, just hangs around the radiator. If I want her on my lap I now have to pick her up and put her there. But after the stroke she was not good at jumping anyway. She seems happy enough, purrs readily and is content to be carried around the house to keep me company. As time goes by she just does less and less. Litter box use is normal. Bloodwork is good: the vet even remarked on it at her last checkup. He said she is the oldest cat on Phenobarbital on his practice. She’s spent half her life on it now.

My husband says we should prepare the kids for her imminent demise (I think he’s really telling me).
When I read about older cats, they all seem to be male. My Dad’s cat lived to be 19, and he did hardly anything either the last few years. He went from obese to thin about 2 years before he died.

My cat was also fat; she takes Phenobarbital for seizures, and that stimulates appetite. I had to measure her food to keep her weight in check. Now in the last 6 months she has become normal sized again; not thin, but no longer fat. I think this is just due to a decreased appetite. I have to follow her around with the food dish at times to coax her to finish it before it dries up.

So….had anyone had a female cat that lived long? Is my premise true, that male cats live longer, or is it just chance that the male cats I’ve observed were longer lived? Thanks!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Do female cats live as long as male?

One of my female cats was 17 when she died.

RE: Do female cats live as long as male?

My oldest cat was almost 23 when SHE died. My oldest cats now are also all female, ages 19, 18, 18, and 18 (mother and her three daughters). I lost their nephew/cousin, Noddy, last summer at age 17. Billy (male) was in his early 20's when I lost him several years ago, but his half-brother, Bitsy, died in his mid-teens. I've seen no gender difference related to lifespan in cats.


RE: Do female cats live as long as male?

I've only had female cats. One died at 16, her sister is still doing well at 19.5. No, she doesn't run around with the kittens (11 months and 5 months), but she eats well enough to keep her weight where the vet wants it, comes downstairs at night to be with us, jumps up on the bed to sleep with us, and reacts to us as she always did.

RE: Do female cats live as long as male?

Laurief, our calico, Paisley, also lived to be 23! It was a grand old age! Cheers to our old timers!

All my cats, but two, have lived into their 20s. Of the three 20+ year olds, 2 were female and one male. The females lived to 23 and 21/22 and the male died at 20/21. (The reason for the uncertainty of ages, was because my vets at the time recorded each of their patient's birthdays as Jan 1st of whatever year they were born. No idea why they did this, but it resulted in a discrepancy between my records and those of my vet.)

One who did not make it to 20, was a female, and she died of internal injuries at age 10. (RIP Johanna. We think she was struck by a horse's hoof). My other cat who did not see his 20th birthday was the Siamese male who was my pet as a kid. He passed away at 17.

I forgot to mention that my current cat, also a female, will reach the 20 year mark this June.

With good care your thirteen old kitty may have some years ahead of her, despite the health challenges she has faced. The stroke probably only used up one of her 9 lives, and left her with 8 more!

This post was edited by spedigrees on Wed, Feb 27, 13 at 17:46

RE: Do female cats live as long as male?

Our first two cats, both females, lived to be 16 and 15 1/2.

RE: Do female cats live as long as male?

I haven't seen too much difference in longevity between the sexes, if the males don't have urinary problems. Most of my cats have been female, so of course I have had more of them to live to old age. My Mama's little female angora made it past twenty, and another to nineteen that I can think of right off the bat. I've had sixteen and eighteen year old cats who pretty much were young looking and acting for their ages.

RE: Do female cats live as long as male?

Hi there,
In my opinion female cats live longer than male cats and it is not just because I think so, most of my cats and my friends' cats are female and they have lived and still live longer than the male ones we had.
For example a cat named Linda, my friends'a cat, is at the age of 17 now and she's still alive, of course she has a lot of medical problems, almost can't walk anymore but her spirit is high fortunately. I guess that female cats are stronger because they need to take care of their offspring several times in their lifes, they are also better hunters and etc. I mean that they have better surviving instincts than male cats and that's why they manage to live longer.

Here is a link that might be useful: Cat trees for old or disabled cats

RE: Do female cats live as long as male?

My girl who passed away last year was 18. Her litter mate brother passed at 14. She had serious health problems the last 6 years of her life, he was never sick a day in his life until 2 weeks before he left us. You just never can tell!

Geez spedigrees, what are you doing to help your kitties live into their 20s? I want to know!

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