If you recently acquired a kitty, you may be wondering how long you may enjoy this adorable little fluff ball. When will he reach adulthood and what size will he attain? In other words, when do cats stop growing?
The short answer is that each cat’s growth is unique and may take between one and four years. However, there are markers that you may use to estimate the size of your floof and the time it will take to reach that size. They are hardly infallible, as numerous aspects ultimately contribute to the final complete glory.
Let’s have a look at kittens and cats.
Life phases of cats
To understand when do cats stop growing, you must learn about the life phases of your cat.
To begin, let us discuss the typical cat. When fully grown, the majority attain a height of 18 inches (paw to shoulder) and weigh approximately 10 pounds. The majority of domestic cats, such as Tabbies and Siamese, reach adulthood within a year. However, there is a lot of growth and a few life stages ahead of you!
Let us begin!
From birth to six months of age: This is the stage of rapid growth. Your kitten will develop from a newborn (eyes closed, completely dependent on Momma) to a feisty, curious cat creating havoc in the house.
Kittens will acquire weight rapidly during this time period. In the first few weeks, a kitten will gain 0.25–0.5 pounds per week until it has doubled its birth weight by weeks 10–12.
This is also a critical time for socializing. To prevent your kitten from becoming aloof, it is critical to provide ample interaction and love. Feral kittens have never been socialized with humans, which explains why they avoid us.
Kittens are fluffy at this stage, with downy hair, round faces, large toe beans (and paws as well), and giant eyes. They have razor-sharp, tiny teeth and delicate bones. Additionally, they are quite energetic and fun. Around ten weeks, they lose their baby teeth. They get their adult teeth by six months. Around 3-6 months, their facial features will become more apparent and sleeker.
6 to 12 months: During this stage, a kitten’s development rate slows. By one year, the majority of veterinarians consider a kitten to be fully grown. During this era, they may also shift from kitten to adult cat food. However, depending on the breed, some cats continue to develop and must be fed kitten chow until they reach the age of two years.
So, when do cats stop growing? In general, they are considered to have reached adulthood when they attain the age of 12 months. That is when they stop growing!
This stage allows you to glimpse how your kitty will look when it reaches adulthood. Many tiny domestic cats stop growing between 12 and 16 months of age, whereas larger cats, such as Ragdoll cats or Maine Coon cats, continue to develop until they reach four or even five years of age! However, the roundness of the face will grow and become more apparent, similar to an adult cat.
This is the adolescent stage of your cat’s life. They may be defiant, rowdy, and perpetually on the move. They’ve developed into a lanky stage and, depending on their degree of exercise, may appear slender. Believe me, they will mature into their frame.
This is also the age at which they attain sexual maturity. A male cat can conceive a female cat, and the female cat can conceive a male cat. When a kitten reaches this stage, your veterinarian may prescribe that it be spayed or neutered, as well as that it be kept away from other cats in order to prevent mating.
1 – 3 Years: At this age, your cat is considered an adult. It may continue to grow at a snail’s pace. Around 18 months, the majority of children cease to grow entirely. During this stage, your cat may appear to be a lean adult.
3 – 6 Years: This is your cat’s prime years. While the larger breeds continue to grow for another year or two, the lesser breeds have blossomed into magnificent adult cats by now. Both will spend much of their time hunting for the catnip mouse, eating yummy morsels from the food dish, grooming, and napping.
7-10 Years: This cat is completely grown. They continue to play but with a more relaxed attitude. There is no further growth, with the possible exception of the belly. Proper nutrition and adequate exercise will help stave against health problems associated with early aging.
11-14 Years: These are in senior years. Age-related disorders might manifest themselves at any time, and your cat will start to slow down.
15+ Years: These cats have entered the geriatric stage of life. They may have weight loss as a result of age-related disorders, and their fur may lose part of its sheen. However, that royal, loving floof remains, ready for the opportunity to hug and nap in your lap.
How large will my cat become?
While you may have stared at your kitten’s paws and wondered if your cute little kitten will grow up to be a monster cat, kittens are not the same as puppies. When grown, cats’ paws do not serve as a measure of size. However, their toe beans are quite cute!
Breed, gender, as well as other factors all contribute to the size of your particular feline. Certain breeds can reach enormous proportions, while others remain small and dainty.
The following things contribute to your cat’s size:
Gender: Male cats develop slower and are larger than female cats. Males can grow up to two pounds larger than their female counterparts.
Fixed or Intact: While neutering or spaying does not influence the size of your cat, as scientists once believed, it can alter their metabolic rate, causing them to gain weight if they prefer resting to playing.
While most veterinarians recommend modifying kittens at six months, shelters and rescue organizations have been changing kittens earlier to avoid unexpected litters. Early neutering requires a minimum weight of 4 lbs.
Birth Order: We have all fallen in love with a cat at some point, despite the fact that it will grow up to be smaller than the other kittens in the litter, and this is true for all kittens in the litter. The further down a kitten’s birth line they fall, the smaller they may grow to be as an adult, especially if the mother cat is little and gave birth to numerous kittens.
Size of litter: Too many kittens can significantly increase the amount of milk available from the mother to the kitty. Kittens with inadequate nutrition develop more slowly and eventually become smaller.
Health of Parents: If your kitten comes from a well-loved and nurtured mother, there is a good possibility that your floof will develop to the full size set by genetics. Otherwise, your furbaby may be smaller when fully grown.
Diet: Proper nutrition equates to proper growth. For the first year of its life, your kitten should be fed a balanced, nutritional diet of kitten chow. While some cats may require kitten food longer (such as larger cats that are still growing), the majority of cats weighing between 10 and 12 pounds can move to adult food between 10 and 12 months of age. Your veterinarian can advise you on the best course of action for your cat.
Genetics: Certain genetic markers can indicate whether your cat will be petite as an adult. They include dwarfism and any deformity of the bones. During routine check-ups, your veterinarian will detect any abnormalities with your cat.
Health Checkup: Routine cat health examinations are critical for all cats, but particularly kittens. Pumpkin provides the industry’s best insurance for kittens and cats.
My kitten is quite plump. Is she going to be large?
Do not confuse weight gain with growth. Kittens, like adult cats, can become overweight.
Consider the height and weight percentages of various cat breeds. The charts provide breed-specific height, length, and weight guidelines for your cat.
During the kitten stage, the best source of information about your cat’s weight and size is your veterinarian. In adulthood, these measures might help you determine where your cat falls on the breed spectrum.
Measurements for breed-specific charts should be taken in the following locations:
Paw to shoulder, excluding the tail.
Length: From the tip of the nose to the base of the tail. They take tail measures separately and this does not indicate the size of your cat or whether it is overweight.
Weight: The charts depict a range of adult weights.
Are you still unsure of how long your cat will continue to grow? The following are some popular cat breeds and their predicted growth rates.
When do cats stop growing?
Tabby, Siamese, or Domestic Shorthair: 13-16 inches long, 11 inches tall, and weighing between 10 and 22 pounds. Growth ceases between the ages of 12 and 19 months.
Ragdolls are 15-26 inches long, 9-11 inches height, and weigh between 8 and 20 pounds. Growth is halted after four years.
Savannahs are 20-25 inches long, 10-19 inches tall, and weigh between 12 and 20 pounds. Growth is halted after two years.
Maine Coons are 48 inches long, 8 to 16 inches tall, and weigh 25 pounds. Growth is halted after four years.
Bengals are 13-16 inches long, 11-13 inches tall, and weigh between 10 and 22 pounds. Growth is halted after two years.
How large will your cat grow to be?
After examining the various factors that influence cat size and when their growth will cease, it’s clear that each cat is unique, and their growth is dependent on a variety of circumstances. The best approach to ensure that your cat reaches the pinnacle of cathood is to provide it good, well-balanced diet rich in important vitamins and minerals, plenty of exercise, and plenty of affection.
If you do that, you may end up with a large or little cat, and it may take a year or four years; but you will end up with a loving feline companion that will accompany you through all the stages of growth.