How old is a cat in human years: here is a very simple way to calculate it

Hangai Lilla

2023. June 4 - Photos: Getty Images Hungary

We've heard of many different calculation methods, just as you've probably come across some, with minor or major differences between them. Today we tried to bring you the most accurate system and we also talk a little about how cats age.


These numbers are good to know not only for the sake of interest. It can be important, because this way you can more easily relate the ages to yourself, and thus you can take care of your pet more effectively. Here is a very simple way to calculate the age of a cat in human years.

How to count

In the case of cats, the calculation is quite simple, unlike for dogs, where there may be differences due to size and breed. The age guidelines below were created and adopted by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), International Cat Care (formerly Feline Advisory Bureau), and the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP):

  • The first year of a cat’s life is equivalent to about 15 human years.
  • The second year of a cat’s life is equivalent to 9 more human years.
  • After the second year of a cat’s life, each additional year is equivalent to about 4 human years.

It looks something like this:

1 month old cat = 1 human year
3 month old cat = 4 human years
6 month old cat = 10 human years

1 year old cat = 15 human years
1.5 years old cat = 21 human years
2 years old cat = 24 human years

3 years & up = 28 human years + 4 every additional cat year

11 years & up = 60 human years + 4 every additional cat year

The calculation is not made out of thin air

As you can see, kittens age much faster in their first 2 years, then this process slows down and maintains that pace for the rest of their lives. Regardless, it may be legitimate to ask on what basis the above-listed organizations determined the numbers. The AAHA describes on its website that the guidelines are based on the physical and behavioral changes that occur at different stages of a cat’s life, which were eventually adapted to human life stages.

Of course, as with humans and dogs, the way and pace at which individual cats age can vary. Unlike dogs, however, there are much smaller differences between different cat breeds and their ages.

Why is it important to understand your pet’s age?

The average age of a cat is around 10-15 years. However, it is important to emphasize that the average here is given by two extremes. Outdoor cats sometimes only spend a few years in this world and then move on to a better place. While in the case of indoor cats kept in good conditions, it is not uncommon for them to love 20-25 years in a healthy way. The current Guinness Record holder Flossie is already 27 years old.

When cats reach the age of 7-10, they enter their mature years, which is why the owner has to watch them a little more closely. Older cats are more likely to develop diseases such as cancer, arthritis, heart, kidney and liver problems.

Of course, up until now, but due to the preservation of health, from this period it is even more important that instead of one visit to the doctor a year, there will be 2, and more emphasis will have to be placed on nutrition and body weight.

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