How Long Do Cats Live For and Does the Average Indoor Cat Live Longer Than an Outdoor Cat?

The average life expectancy for male indoor cats in captivity is about 12 to 14 years, with females usually living a year or two longer.

indoor cats live longer than outdoor cats

There have been some reports of cats reaching into their 20s and even 30s, however, with the oldest known cat, Creme Puff, living to a ripe old age of 38.

Having a cat neutered or spayed has some health benefits, since castrated males cannot develop testicular cancer, spayed females cannot develop ovarian cancer.

The lifespan of feral cats is usually not more than 5 years, as they do not receive the care of indoor cats.

Cats live hard and die fast outside in the modern world.

Not only do they have to worry about other cats, dogs, and wild animals, but they also have a bigger menace to face, the Jaguars, Cougars, Lynxes, Vipers, Rams, Impalas, and Mustangs that speed along our roads.

The Animal Rescue Foundation estimates that outdoor cats live an average of three years; indoor and outdoor cats, seven years; and indoor-only cats, fifteen to eighteen years.

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

3 thoughts on “How Long Do Cats Live For and Does the Average Indoor Cat Live Longer Than an Outdoor Cat?”

  1. I have two cats one female and one male. I adopted them from the SPCA. I feed them good quality food and give them both lots of attention. They are indoor cats. The male is 14 years old and the female is 13 years old. I have not taken them to the Vet for seven years, and they are both healthy. I find that giving a cat a stress free life (lots of love and affection} will prolong their life.

  2. My healthy cats (I’ve had 8) have lived for between 16 and 20 yrs 3 months old. (Two died younger, and were sick before I got them.) They were all indoor/outdoor, and stayed in my front and back yard.

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