Oldest Cat in the World?

image My cat is approaching 11. But Diane Sleeman's cat, Amber, is approaching 30. Or so Sleeman claims. If true, Amber would be the oldest cat in the world. However, Amber is missing most of her teeth, so researchers have no way to verify her age. I'd like to believe this is true, but it's a little hard to swallow. A 30-year-old cat would be like the equivalent of a 140-year-old person.


Posted on Wed Feb 23, 2005


I think the longest-lived (proven) cat on record lived somewhere around 34 years, so 30 years is possible, though highly unusual.

Cats living 20-25 years aren't all that rare.

You-didn't-ask-but-I'm-telling-you-anyway: Typical life expectancy for a well-cared-for pet cat is about 15-16 years. Life expectancy of a feral ("alley") cat is far less than that.

My cat will be 12 in April.
Posted by Big Gary C  on  Wed Feb 23, 2005  at  09:08 PM
The article actually says Ms. Sleeman has had Amber since 1978 (before that Amber was a stray of unknown age), so I'd say Amber's proven age is not more than 27. Still very, very old for a cat, but not as impressive as 30.
Posted by Big Gary C  on  Wed Feb 23, 2005  at  09:13 PM
My cat died last year at 18 1/2, and the one I have now is 14. I know their ages because I know their birthdays and got them as kittens. My cat's vet said that the avg life span of cats is 7-9 yrs (for indoor/outdoor cats, indoor only cats live longer. Mine is an indoor/outdoor cat.)
I asked him why my cat lived so long with such few health issues (he only ever had abscesses every once in a while and one time caught an airborne virus), and he said that if he knew the answer to that, he'd be a rich man. Then he asked me if I loved my cat. Of course the answer was yes, I'd had him since I was 15!

Completely off the subject, but anyone heard of Clifford the big red dog? Emily Elizabeth is his owner, and it was her love that made him grow so big. Just a side note. Nothing to do with anything...
Posted by thephrog  on  Wed Feb 23, 2005  at  09:41 PM
I forgot to mention that my old boss's cat was 27 years old in 1998. I don't know if the cat is still alive or not.
Posted by thephrog  on  Wed Feb 23, 2005  at  09:41 PM
Here's a link to a story from 97 about a cat who turned 32:


Says that this cat was two years away from being the oldest cat in history, so you're looking at 34 years old.

I work in a vet clinic and so far our oldest cat was around 27. Come to think of it, the oldest dog was 23. Pretty remarkable, albeit not so common...but it can & does happen.
Posted by Tornado  on  Wed Feb 23, 2005  at  10:08 PM
The oldest cat I've ever met was 22 when he died. The oldest dog I can think of off the top of my head is now 19, though I'm sure there are older ones (the one I'm thinking of is a husky, which is uncommon). Both owners had the animals as babies, so I'm pretty sure the ages are accurate. We have plenty of 17 and 18 year old cats where I work, average lifespan seems to be 14-16.

I can only estimate an animal's age very broadly by looking at the teeth, once they are adults. I would think (though I could easily be mistaken) that the only way to confirm the cat's age would be veterinary or other legal records. Just looking at the picture, I'd have guessed she was at least in the 17-18 range. I
Posted by hippievet  on  Wed Feb 23, 2005  at  11:19 PM
My brother had a cat named Hobbes that recently died. Hobbes was 26 (by vet records)when he died. He was a stray when my brother got him, so who really knows how old that cat was.
Posted by Christopher  on  Thu Feb 24, 2005  at  05:11 AM
...a house cat does not have natural enemies, has a constant food supply, is less likely to have litters (spaying/nuetering of house pets is much more common, & living in the house, you are less likely to have contact w/ a male cat), and (presumably) has healthcare.

If people were taken care of like this...we might have the chance to live to 140. (Please don't think I'm advocating human nuetering!! I'm mostly talking about the care that house cats receive w/o having to have a 60 hr/wk job to make it all happen.)
Posted by Maegan  on  Thu Feb 24, 2005  at  06:54 AM
Interesting, one of the google add for this is "Discount Bonsai Kitten." I love that text-sensitive advertising. Sadly, the link just takes me to a zero-result ebay page.
Posted by Citizen Premier  on  Thu Feb 24, 2005  at  08:20 AM
My cat's breath smells like catfood.
Posted by brian  on  Thu Feb 24, 2005  at  10:11 AM
brian: Your breath smells like human food.
Posted by Big Gary C  on  Thu Feb 24, 2005  at  11:20 AM
I always wonder about people these days with old pets that can't substantiate that they're old. One would assure taking your cat to the vet for shots wasn't THAT uncommon in the late 1970's. As time passes, it'll get more and more unlikely that a person can claim to have no record of the early life of their 'amazingly old' cats and dogs.
Posted by Mel  on  Thu Feb 24, 2005  at  01:08 PM
Re. pets of unknown age:
Frequently, it's because the human doesn't know the pet's age when it was adopted. For example, my neighbor adopted a cat seven and a half years ago. The cat was already an adult when she showed up in my neighbor's yard. So we know that Daisy is at least seven and a half years old, but we don't know how much older.
Veterinary records could help, but after 25 or 30 years there's a good chance the orginal vet clinic is out of business. Some pet owners keep records on all their pets meticulously, but I'd guess there are more who do not.
Posted by Big Gary C  on  Thu Feb 24, 2005  at  05:20 PM
The vet hospital I work for has been in business about 15 years, and we have at least one living patient who has been coming there for 12 years. It's not impossible but unlikely that the original vet might have old records, if the owners stayed with the same vet the pet's entire life. However, I think we're only required to keep records on inactive (deceased or moved) patients for about three years (I don't own the business, so I'm not sure on the exacts). Some pet owners keep their pets' entire medical record on hand, though...

Also, is that gray female cat you had vaccinated in the 1980's the same gray female cat you have now, or are you pulling a hoax? As more pets are microchipped or otherwise permanently identified and registered, it will be easier to confirm ages.
Posted by hippievet  on  Thu Feb 24, 2005  at  10:58 PM
Maegan: I sure as hell would be an advocate of human neutering. God knows there are a lot of people that should never reproduce.

Brian: Ralph is the coolest!
Posted by Sarah  on  Fri Feb 25, 2005  at  05:33 PM
Sarah...I don't disagree with you. =o)
Posted by Maegan  on  Sun Feb 27, 2005  at  05:58 AM
ive got a 40 year old hamster. any one wanna buy her? maybe ill sell her on ebay waahahahahaha
Posted by tim  on  Sun Feb 27, 2005  at  04:39 PM
Not so surprising - we got a Siamese Female (Sealpoint roundhead) when I was 3 in 1950. She lived to be 26. The only reason we lost her then was having to put her down because of an incurable jaw infection.
Last year, I buried a Marmalade Tom who reached 21 before he had a severe stroke - I don't have enough income where I could've gotten him the surgery required.
With modern medical/diet care, there's no reason a cat shouldn't reach 30+.
Posted by Moses Lambert  on  Sat Mar 05, 2005  at  02:58 PM
There's a fairly good summary of oldest cats (oldest ever and oldest still living) at http://www.messybeast.com/longevity.htm There was a claim of a cat more than 40 years old, but it inconveniently died just before a researcher went to check it out!
Posted by Sarah  on  Thu Mar 10, 2005  at  05:11 AM
thephrog, are you sure your vet wasn't talking about strays? I've got several indoor/outdoor cats, one is already 10, and they're all expected to live at least until 14-16. The oldest cat I knew was about 22 when he died.
Posted by 500ml  on  Sun Mar 13, 2005  at  08:25 AM
"Maegan: I sure as hell would be an advocate of human neutering." - Sarah

"Sarah...I don't disagree with you. =o)" - Maegan

Isn't fascism great?
Posted by Rod  on  Sun Mar 13, 2005  at  08:58 AM
i have a cat that is about 20 years old, she has her front claws removed and car still climb tree like it was nothing. She acts really yong 😊
Posted by Chris  on  Sat Apr 02, 2005  at  06:35 PM
I have a Abbysianian kitty names birdie.She is 29 years old this Sept. and does not show it at all!!We went for vaccines today and her vet comminted that she nEvER shows any change year after year. i feel someone should know, are you interested??Marian
Posted by Marian Callison  on  Wed Jun 08, 2005  at  08:43 PM
I like cats. They are really tasty. I was raised on cat meat, and i must say that the british shorthairs flavour is particularly divine.
Posted by Troll  on  Sat Jul 09, 2005  at  10:58 PM
You insensitive bastard! Can you not see that this is not a recipe board?

Go away and learn some manners you heartless prick!
Posted by Harold  on  Sat Jul 09, 2005  at  11:03 PM
I believe this could be true, my cat that died a couple years ago lived to 21 in human years
Posted by Lexi  on  Sat Jul 23, 2005  at  02:58 AM
:):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):)my nan has had her cat for 22 years now and it was a stray before she got her as she found her in the street, although she has not got many teeth and is going death she is still very lively and attacts the dog from time to time haha
Posted by nade  on  Sat Aug 20, 2005  at  03:00 PM
Hello all, my cat died yesterday. She was 16 years old... I still think I should not let her have a surgery to remove her ovaris. Next day she got an infection that became sepsis. She could not struggle any longer and I had to put her to sleep so she is finally with God now.:(
Posted by Alfia  on  Fri Sep 09, 2005  at  11:43 AM
We took in a cat thru his final days. We were told that not only is this cat 23 yrs old...he used to used belong to none other than Jim 'The Muppets' Henson.
I think we are the cats 4th or 5th owner...but he's become 'our boy' now.
Posted by Joanne  on  Fri Oct 14, 2005  at  04:40 PM
My husband got his cat, Max, when he was two days old.. that was 28-1/2 years ago. April 1977. We have the record of his first vet visit the day after.
We have two other cats, Katt is 9 years old and quite intelligent. Spott is 4, and quite dumb.

Maxx is still the mouser. Katt doesn't like to kill and Spott doesn't know what to do with a mouse. They bring them in and Maxx takes care of them after the other two are done.

He had another cat that he adopted as a stray about a year later.. no idea how old she was, but we do know she was at least a year old, but she died in 2002 at least 26.
Posted by Sebrina  on  Tue Oct 18, 2005  at  12:38 AM
i once had 2 cats, one became 19 and the other 21 years old,we eventually had to put them asleep becuz they were so old and had alot of pain
Posted by emiel  on  Sun Nov 13, 2005  at  01:35 PM
💋 Hey,I have cat and I don't know exactly how old she is...but anyways here is her story:):)
When my mom was 17 she found Zoe (my cat) in Beban park, so she broat her to her house and put ads in the news paper and no one called so she kept her.At that time Zoe was an adult cat.A few months later so had kittens,my mom kept one and gave away the rest.She named that cat cody, anyways a few years ago Cody died :shut: but Zoe is still alive, now I think she's about twenty, she has all her teeth, can see and hear,she loves me ive know her all my life and I know shes going to die soon,but shes lived a long life:):):):(:(:(I love her so much!I love catz their the best!It's kinda funny shes so old because my mom says shes going to outlive us all hahaha!!!
Today my friends cat died:(But it had a good life:(:(:(::):):)anyways hope you guys read this
Posted by skylar  on  Thu Dec 01, 2005  at  05:13 PM
my cat is currently 20 years old my dad found him in the snow after a snowmobiler through him there my dad rode up on his 3 wheeler and grabbed him he is very fiesty my dad found him the year of 1986 in michigan
Posted by Steven Hammerli  on  Mon Dec 26, 2005  at  01:44 PM
My cat, Tequila, died today. She was the most beautiful calico. She was nearly 17 years old. I delivered her myself on Aug. 16, 1989. I kept her indoors and gave her regular veterinary care. I looked up this site to see what her life span should have been. I miss her so much. I feel a huge weight on my heart right now. I tried to so hard to make her comfortable in the end. We had lots of adventures together.

Sarah & Maegan ~ I definitely advocate human neutering. So many people breed and reproduce who should not. All sex offenders should be castrated.
Posted by Wendy  on  Wed Mar 08, 2006  at  12:02 AM
hey i was jk about that last comment it only lived to be 300,000,000,000,000 years old!!!! LOL JK!! anyways it was my grandmas and it lived to be 20.....BECOME PRO ANIMAL!!!!
Posted by lllpppp  on  Fri Mar 24, 2006  at  07:12 PM
Whooo yah! im the cat lady of Senlac!
Posted by Teagan  on  Fri Mar 24, 2006  at  11:57 PM
what duz that meen Teagan?
Posted by lllllllllllllppppppp  on  Mon May 29, 2006  at  08:07 AM
my Cat is a siamise female, i think she will reach nearly 26 old, is it really luck or something like that ? the good part is that she has not to much problems for the moment, apart a very bad vision, and still a very strong voice when she mades a vocalist session. I though i could put her in the guinness book but it seems that it's not the oldest of all, but anyway it begins to be a rare case.
I would be please to hear about any of your eventual comments. Markus, malagny, france
Posted by MELCHER  on  Thu Jun 15, 2006  at  04:34 PM
my god i do not belive you i am 54 years old older then that cat
Posted by Maddie  on  Fri Jun 16, 2006  at  03:10 PM
My cat is nineteen years young and spunky and playful to this day. She has had two serious close calls and now only ventures outdoors with an escort.
Posted by miss mary  on  Tue Jun 20, 2006  at  09:58 PM
I have two 17 years old cats. I plan to keep them going as long as they continue to desire life, but it gets harder and harder. They are like two old people. Picky eaters, poor eyesight, etc. I'd like to hear more about what all of you feed your cats who live into their 20's.
Posted by Jill  on  Sat Jun 24, 2006  at  10:03 PM
I read recently the oldest cat was 37 years. They said they weren't sure because they didn't have the exact birth date. There is the exact bieth date of a cat that lived 34 years.
Posted by Ali  on  Mon Jun 26, 2006  at  07:12 PM
Oreo is 22 years old - her Mom and brother were put down last summer. She is amazing - recently went outside (supervised by me) and hunted a garden snake. I don't let her stay outside by herself - we live in an area with many wild animals. She has lost much of her hearing , can't groom herself the way she used to (my younger cat and I do it for her) - we live on a very proctected lane, so cars aren't an issue. She has outlived 5 other cats - including two that died of feline leukemia. As old as she is, she is still incredibly beautiful and as sweet as the day she was born. She sleeps alot, always looking for the warmest place in our home. My hope for her is a mild winter, a warm hearth. I so love my Oreo.
Posted by lynn  on  Fri Aug 11, 2006  at  07:15 PM
My cat is almost 21. I got him at a year old when I was 10 and I'll be 30 in 2007. I found this page wondering how old the oldest cat lived to be. I see Ceazer has a long way to go to beat the record. I can't imagine losing him after all these years.
Posted by Kelli  on  Tue Sep 05, 2006  at  02:49 PM
I have a female Tonkinese who will be 20 in March...She's still spunky, very loud & demands affection! =)...Good genes & lots of love & care got her to the ripe old age...I've had her since I was 10 so the thought of losing her is very traumatic!
Posted by Caroline  on  Mon Oct 09, 2006  at  06:28 PM
My cat Baby I got her from a friend in the year 1988.. Baby is 2 years younger than my nephew who was born in 1986... Baby will be 19 come springtime... she was diagnosed with Renal Failure, but with recent blood testing she is fine on her kidneys.. but tested positive for Thyroid disease.. she was an indoor/outdoor cat all her life... actually I think in her mind she thought she was a dog.. due to meowing at the door to go out.. but now since she is sick and my Mom passed away (she was taking care of her for a few years) so now she is with me as a strictly indoor cat.. and I hope for her to thrive as she has been for the past 19 years...
Posted by Juliana  on  Mon Oct 16, 2006  at  01:49 PM
I have an indoor/outdoor cat that is at least 20 years old. When I adopted him in 1987 he was full grown so he was at least 8-12 months old. He was hit by a car when he was 2 years old and one of his rear legs was broken in multiple places (thigh bone section) and had to be held together with pins. He has had 90% of his colon surgically removed because of chronic constipation (megacolon). Other than the constipation problem he is in excellent health. He still will attack strange dogs that try to come into our yard and likes to play.
Posted by N.L. Walker  on  Mon Oct 30, 2006  at  05:40 AM
My boyfriend has a cat that's 17 1/2 years old and in pretty good health. He can still see although he has a little bit of trouble hearing sometimes. Anyways I was looking on the internet to find out how old the oldest cat was and according to one site, the Guiness Book of World Records says that the oldest cat was 31 years two months and 4 hours old.
Posted by dixie  on  Sat Feb 03, 2007  at  09:42 PM
My cat Kika turned 18 last October, and she's still going, aaaand well: all teeth, good vision/smell/appetite, occasional fur balls, very loud (maybe she's not hearing that well), and playing still, when feels like it
Posted by sirley  on  Mon Feb 12, 2007  at  11:26 AM
My cat, Mugsy, was born just before my parental units were married, almost twenty years ago. HE WILL BE 20 IN APRIL.
Posted by THE FLESHER FAMILY OF OKLAHOMA  on  Sat Mar 03, 2007  at  06:58 PM
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