Feline Dementia

As most cats reach their senior years, mental health tends to decline over time.  Senior cat dementia is a non-curable disease, but there may be things you can do to slow the progression.

Common Symptoms:

Disorientation—you may see your cat appear to be confused and unable to navigate around familiar settings.

Interaction changes—your cat may lose interest in being petted, greeting you at the door, or any other social interactions that were once common.

Sleep changes—restlessness at night and more sleeping during the day.

House soiling—exhibit incontinence, urinating/defecating outside the litter box.

Activity changes—uninterested in normal activities such as eating and grooming.  You may also notice irritability and anxiety.

Diagnosing Dementia

Many of the symptoms of feline dementia can also be symptoms of medical conditions or behavioural concerns.  Your veterinarian will have to rule out these causes before diagnosing dementia.

Treating Aging Dementia

As there is no cure for feline ageing dementia, it is a progressive disease.  There are, however, a number of treatments that have been shown to delay this progression and improve day-to-day functioning.

Enrichment Activities—for example, new toys and exercise.

Diet Change—a veterinarian will be able to provide you a recommended diet and/or dietary supplements to promote brain health.

Medications—Psychoactive drugs can aid brain function.


The above picture is my cat Ripples at the sweet age of 17 years

Written by Trish Parkin