Cats grow up so fast don’t they?
One minute their a cute fluff ball kitten full of vigor and curiosity, and the next they’re taking half of the couch for a deep afternoon sleep.
The time it takes feels like a blink, and it’s not much longer than that.
So then, when do cats stop growing?
After a kitten is born he or she usually experiences an almost immediate growth spurt: doubling in size in the first 7 days—from teeny-tiny to slightly more than teeny-tiny.
The early life of a cat is one big growth spurt.
The first 6 months of a cat’s life is equal to the first 15 years of a person’s life, roughly. It’s a time of rapid development. It’s around this point that hormones are firing like meteors, making a cat somewhat temperamental.
Then at some point between 6 months and 12 months a kitten has grown into a fully-fledged cat. At this point a cat will be sexually mature: make sure to separate male and female cats if they’re not neutered and you plan to do so.
Here’s a handy way to look at a cat’s lifespan:
Cats From Birth to Senior Catzenry
- Kitty (0 – 6 months)
- Junior (6 months to 2 months old)
- Prime (3 to six years old)
- Mature (7 to 10 years old
- Senior (11 to 14 years old)
Typically, cats are considered adults on their first birthday, but that doesn’t necessarily mean a cat has stopped growing.
Most cats continue to grow until about 18 months. Like people, some cats grow into maturity fast and some take their time.
But at about 12 months of age your kitty will become fairly set in their ways as an adult. Whether they’re affectionate or skittish, gluttonous or frugal, their personalities are established; our cat Miles is a porker for life.
Keep in mind just because your cat has stopped growing vertically doesn’t mean they’re done growing horizontally! Try and make sure your cats get up and move if they’re inclined to laze around on that blanket draped over the couch.
How big will my cat get?
How big your particular cat is going to grow depends on the cat’s species. Savannah Cats, Maine Coon Cats, Chausie Cats have a slight arrested development due to their mature size, which means they take a little longer to grow.
Some breeds may not stop growing until they’re 4 years old.
Maine Coon cats become as big as dogs. The males tend to weight between 15 and 25 pounds while females are between 10 to 15 pounds. But their growth takes time.
The typical cat (average cat) will grow to about 7.9 to 9.9 pounds. Light enough to liff, heavy enough to make sure your wall shelves are secure.
What Factors Determine Cat Growth?
Diet Affects Growth
Remember what your parents told you, “Eat your food or you’ll never grow up big and strong”? Well, the same applies to kittens.
Cats needs a healthy dose of calories to help them grow. If they don’t get their daily nutrition then they’ll likely be stunted in their development.
Not only that but kittens have their own nutritional requirements, what amounts to a growth-focused diet.
This is one of the reasons why cats raised in shelters are often smaller than cats raised in a home. They seem calorically dense foods just aren’t available.
Your Cat’s Gender
Cats are sexually dimorphic creatures. That just means that male and female cats grow to different sizes.
Male cats tend to be bigger than females. This might help explain why Miles is wider than Persephone but I’ll chalk that up to his insatiable appetite.
Big Cat, Small Cat
Whether you have a big cat or a small cat, or they’re somewhere in between, you’re cat is probably taking up space somewhere right now where you typically like to sit.
Do you have a large cat or a tiny cat, or maybe a tall cat or a wide cat?
Did we miss anything we should have covered? Let us know in the comments below!