Is arthritis pain affecting your cat’s quality of life?

Cats love to jump, climb and pounce - but maybe you’ve noticed that they've become less adventurous lately. Are they spending more time resting or sleeping, not quite jumping or playing like they used to, or do they seem a bit more grumpy? This change in behaviour may have you questioning why – and rightly so, as they could be signs of arthritis pain. Arthritis affects up to 40% of cats globally1, but it can be hard to spot the signs as cats are naturally good at hiding pain. It’s not just older cats that are at risk - 61% of cats 6 years and older show signs of arthritis in at least one joint2. Take the assessment to check your cat for signs of arthritis, and find out if you should visit your vet for a full assessment to help maximise their quality of life.

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Recognise the symptoms of arthritis

You know your cat better than anyone and can recognise when things have changed. The signs of arthritis pain can be both physical and behavioural and our simple online assessment will help you determine whether your cat might benefit from a vet visit for diagnosis and treatment. All you need to do is answer a few questions and then we’ll send you a checklist that can help you have an informed chat with your vet.

What are the symptoms of arthritis pain in cats?

Many cat owners aren't aware that arthritis pain could be a problem in their cat. The symptoms can be quite subtle at first or attributed to old age and can be caused by other factors such as diet or environment. If you haven’t already had the condition diagnosed by your vet, here are the things you should be looking out for:

  • Trouble walking or running
  • Moving slower than normal
  • Appearing stiff when first getting up
  • Reluctance to play
  • Restless at night
  • Difficulty with stairs or jumping 
  • Repeatedly licking joints
  • Quietness or grumpiness

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My cat has already been diagnosed with arthritis

If your cat has already been diagnosed with arthritis then continue to monitor their progress. Pain management is advancing all the time and your vet will be able to recommend the best course of action available.

More useful advice

Learn more about giving your cats, dogs and other pets a healthy and enjoyable life.

1. E.M. Hardie, S.C Roe, F.R Martin. Radiographic evidence of degenerative joint disease in geriatric cats: 100 cases (1994-1997). J Am Vet Med Assoc, 220 (5) (2002)

2. Slingerland LI et al, Cross-sectional study of the prevalence and clinical features of osteoarthritis in 100 cats, Vet J. 2011 Mar;187(3):304-9