Best Cats for Seniors

Getting into your senior years can be very lonely – especially if your spouse has passed away, your children have moved out on their own or maybe your friends live in a different city – so having a cat can keep you company and give you a friend to spend time with.

Best Cats for Seniors

Like dogs, there are a lot of different breeds of cats and some of them are better suited for specific kinds of living environments over others. If you’re looking for the best breed of cat for your loved one in their senior years, or maybe you are a senior who is just looking for a companion to come home to, here are the best kinds of cats for your home.

Birman

This breed of cat is particularly affectionate, gentle and intelligent. In most cases they are known to be pretty playful, but not over the top in terms of activity so they are a great match for seniors who may not want a cat with extra energy. They are known to really enjoy the company of people, and can form a very strong bond to one person in particular – which is very helpful for seniors living on their own.

In terms of care, they are pretty low maintenance to care for as they have semi-long hair and only require a quick daily groom to remove the loose hairs. Additionally, their nails require a trim every 4 – 6 weeks.

Ragdoll

Similar to the Birman, this cat has shown a lot of affection towards their owners. The ragdoll cat is a loving and calm cat, with a very laid back personality. In addition to being laid back and calm, these cats will often follow their people around the house and want to “help” with whatever their people are doing.

If you are looking for a companion cat, this breed is very suitable for a senior who may be a little lonely.

Ragdoll Cats for Seniors
Ragdoll cat with beautiful blue eyes

 

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British Shorthair

This breed of cat has a very low activity level, so if you’re looking for a cat that might just lounge around the house with you then this could be your new best friend. With a shorthaired coat, the maintenance and care for this breed of cat is super easy and doesn’t require much effort.

This cat has been known to be like a teddy bear to its family, and they are good-natured towards most people. If you get this breed of cat as a kitten, they will be pretty playful you but you will likely find they mellow out really quickly once into adulthood. On top of that, these cats are pretty independent and can entertain themselves for much of the day if you have other commitments where you aren’t home for certain periods of time.

Russian Blue

Another shorthaired breed of cat, the Russian Blue is a pretty quiet and loving cat. They are also fairly independent, but like to spend time with their people. Lucky for their owners, this kind of cat typically tends to stay out of trouble and keeps to themselves.

In addition to those great qualities, the Russian Blue typically gets along well with other pets in the house so if you have a small dog or another cat then you can likely introduce this cat to other members of the family without much issue. They also get along well with children so your grandchildren can come to visit without much worry that the cat won’t like them.

 

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Moggy (domestic shorthair)

Moggies have been known to come in all shapes and sizes, and some are really active while others are much more laidback. If you are considering this breed of cat, there are many of them in humane societies and shelters. The cats in the shelters will be known by the staff working there, so they can match you to the right fit of cat for you.

If you are looking for a more laid back cat, and a Moggy is what you want, adopting an older cat will give you that more relaxed and chill companion you’re wanting.

Persian

This quiet cat is one of the oldest breeds of cat, but it’s still a fantastic companion for seniors. This is a sweet, affectionate and gentle cat who has been known to bond well with its family. They also get along well with other pets in the family, however they may not be the best pet for houses with children.

Persian Cats for Seniors
Adult Persian cat being lazy

They have been known to avoid children who are overly loud and active. If you have grandchildren who occasionally visit you should still be ok as long as they know how to appropriately respect the cat’s boundaries.

This cat does have longer hair, so you may need to do a little more grooming than some of the short-haired cats you could adopt but it isn’t too much as long as you stay on top of it.

 

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Burmilla

This breed of cat is slightly more active than the Persian cat, but not so active that they will be too much for a senior to handle. Their coats come in both short and long so you may have your choice about the coat, and can choose your preference. They are known to be playful, though, so if you are looking for a cat that doesn’t just sleep all day without being too overly active then this could be the right choice for you.

Burmillas enjoy being part of the family, so you know they will want to spend time with you – doing whatever you’re doing. Additionally, they are affectionate and gentle so you know that your cat will want to cuddle on the couch with you at night, watching a movie.

Scottish Fold

This kind of cat is really unique breed – notable for its folded down ears. They are quiet, loyal and intelligent and they get along very well with other pets and all family members.

Unfortunately, the reason for the folded down ears is a result of a condition that affects the cartilage in the body. This condition can lead to an increased risk of early onset arthritis for your cat – so something to keep in mind, especially if you may not be able to pay for expensive vet bills.

 

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Snowshoe

This sweet-tempered cat is very affectionate and loyal to their people. They also get along well with other pets so you can easily integrate this cat into a home that already has other pets. They may be a little more vocal than some of the other breeds listed here, so that might be something to consider when looking for a cat.

If you live in an apartment building, having a vocal cat may irritate your neighbours or if the cat is loud at all hours of the day then it might wake you up. Aside from being vocal, this cat is very affectionate and loving, and would make a wonderful companion cat for any senior.

Snowshoe Cats for Seniors
Snowshoe cat seating on a carpet

A Few Things to Think About Before Getting a Cat

If you’ve never had a cat before, there may be a few things you should consider before bringing a cat into your home (and if you didn’t know these things, that’s ok).

Grandchildren

If you have grandchildren who spend a lot of time at your home, this is going to be a large consideration for the kind of cat you bring into your home.

If you are going to adopt a cat from a local humane society, you will probably want to check with the staff there as to whether the cat is ok with young children.

Long Hair vs. Short Hair

Cats with long hair will need to be groomed much more regularly than those with short hair to make sure their coats don’t get matted. You can do this yourself, if you feel comfortable doing it, or you can take the cat to a groomer to have it done on a regular basis.

Mats can become quite painful to your cat if they aren’t taken care of properly, so it’s really important that you understand this if you decide to get a longhaired cat.

Age of Cat When Adopted

Kittens are going to be very playful – no matter what breed they are – so if you are thinking of getting a kitten this will be something to take into consideration.

Most cats will mellow out once they reach adulthood, so if you want a cat that is more relaxed and just lies about then you might want to consider adopting an adult cat.

 

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Wrap Up

Getting a cat as a companion is a great way to avoid loneliness, especially if you are living alone or aren’t able to spend much time with your family. You can get cats from breeders if you want, but there are many cats available in local shelters that have been surrendered by previous families (for a variety of reasons).

Take the time to look around and see what adoptable cats are out there. Older cats may not be acute as a kitten, but they are much more independent and relaxed – a better companion for a senior who may not want to have an active kitten in the house.