You adopt an adult cat from the local shelter or a stray steals your heart. Either way, you have a new family member. But how old is she? Aging an adult cat is not an exact science, even among veterinarians. But there are some physical clues that will help you determine your new cat’s age.
By 2 years of age, the molars typically have some mild tartar. By 5 years, the tartar is more pronounced on the molars and affects the canines as well. This method is not very reliable since the type of diet and whether or not the teeth are brushed can affect tartar buildup.
By middle to older age, the incisors begin to wear down, and as he ages even more, teeth may begin to fall out. By age 12, some incisors may be missing.
Aging an adult cat is difficult and the best you can ask for is an approximation, which may be off by 2 to 4 years. Thankfully, the age of your cat does not affect her ability to provide you with a loving companion and friend.