How can someone tell a cat's age?

A stray cat showed up at my back door last year and I adopted him. I took him in for shots and neutering and the vet told me he’s about 9 years old. How does the vet check for age and how accurate can they be with age?

Dentition and iris pigment changes allow a crude “guesstimation” of age. Certain ages, such as when certain permanent teeth errupt, can be told more closely.

Ideally, a cats age can be determined by taking today’s date and subtracting the cat’s birthdate.

Vetbridge, have I told you lately that I love you?

Just cut 'em open and count ther rings.

HEY! That’s not nice. No kitty hurting will be tolerated around here. :wink:

Has anyone just asked the cat directly?

Not everyone speaks cat.

No, but you can. :smiley:

I happen to have it on good authority that cats can survive being cut in half. Happens all the time in nature. :stuck_out_tongue:

You can’t. They don’t like it when you act familiar.

But seriously folks…

I recently took in a very young kitten, adopted him from the vet that I take my others to. At the time, she guessed his age at 3 weeks maybe less. That was a month ago this weekend. This Monday, I took him back for a check-up and she consulted the calendar and declared him 7 weeks old.

Fine, that’s simple math. My question is, how did she come to that “3 week” guess in the first place? He was undernourished, so size doesn’t seem like a realistic measure. What gives a vet an idea of an unknown kitten’s age?

If I were to guess things like how the teeth are developed, appearance of genitalia, eye color - that stuff, am I close?

Darn you…I came in here to post that! (I’m a kittie lover…I have three, just for the record, none of which have been cut in half)

Since I mentioned mine, here is a picture of one of them, Arthur.

Here: and here: is a list of kitten age-determiners. Sounds like your kitten had open blue eyes but teeth not all the way in yet, so 3 weeks.

Oh man, you take the coolest pictures. I linked to your website a few days back and next thing you know, there went an hour…

Thanks, that exactly describes him the first couple days. Within a day or two of getting him home, he was gorging on canned food but it was a week befofre his teeth could do any damage.

That makes three of us.

Thank you very much! It’s always nice to hear when people like your work. :slight_smile:

Four. Thank god I’m not alone, here…


We’re sick…we need help.

Our vet said that the shelter where we got Katya got her age wrong. She said this as soon as she looked at Katya’s teeth, so I imagine that’s how she knew.

What about torturing my fat kitty by putting her on a diet? :wink: She acts like she is starving to death, despite the potbelly.