When do cats stop growing?

When do cats stop growing? The short answer is that each cat’s growth is unique and may take between one and four years. However, there are indicators that you can use to estimate the size of your cat and the time it will take to reach that size. They are not foolproof, as numerous factors ultimately contribute to the final full glory. Let’s take a look at kittens and cats.

Feline stages of life

When do cats stop growing? To begin, let us discuss the typical cat. When fully grown, the majority reaches a height of 18 inches (paw to shoulder) and weigh approximately 10 pounds. The majority of domestic cats, such as Tabbies and Siamese, reach adulthood within a year. However, there is considerable growth and a few life stages ahead of you! 

Newborn to 6 months old

This is the stage of the most rapid growth. Your kitten will develop from a newborn (eyes closed, completely dependent on Momma) to a feisty, curious kitten wreaking havoc in the house. Kittens will gain weight rapidly during this period. A kitten will gain 0.25–0.5 lbs per week in the first few weeks until it has doubled its birth weight by weeks 10–12.

This is also a critical time for socialization. To prevent your kitten from becoming aloof, it is essential to provide ample interaction and love. Feral kittens have never been socialized with humans, which explains why they avoid us.

Kittens are fluffy at this stage, with downy fur, round faces, large toe beans (and paws as well), and enormous eyes. They have razor-sharp, minuscule teeth, and delicate bones. Additionally, they are very active and playful. Around ten weeks, they lose their baby teeth. They have their adult teeth by six months. Around 3-6 months, their facial features will become more prominent and sleek.

Six months to 12 months 

During this stage, a kitten’s growth rate slows significantly. By one year, the majority of veterinarians consider a kitten to be fully grown. During this stage, they may also transition from kitten to adult cat food. However, depending on the breed, some cats are still growing and must be fed kitten food until they reach two.

This stage allows you to see how your kitty will look when it reaches adulthood. Many small domestic cats stop growing between 12 and 16 months of age, but larger cats, such as Maine Coon cats or Ragdoll cats, continue to grow until they reach four or even five years of age! However, the roundness of the face will lengthen and become more prominent, similar to an adult cat.

This is the adolescent stage of your cat’s life. They may be defiant, unruly, and perpetually on the move. They’ve developed into a slight stage and may appear lean depending on their level of activity. They will mature into their frame.

This is the age at which they attain sexual maturity. A male cat can impregnate a female cat, and a female cat can get pregnant. During this stage, your veterinarian may suggest spaying or neutering your kitten or separating it from other cats to prevent mating.

1 – 3 Years

At this stage, your cat is an adult. It may continue to grow at a snail’s pace. Around 18 months, the majority of children cease to develop ultimately. During this period, your cat may appear to be a lean adult.

3 – 6 Years: 

This is your cat’s prime. While the larger breeds continue to grow for another year or two, the smaller breeds have blossomed into magnificent adult cats by now. Both will spend their days chasing for that catnip mouse, eating tasty morsels from the food dish, grooming, and sleeping.

7-10 Years

This is an adult cat. They continue to play but with a more relaxed attitude. There is no further growth, with the possible exception of the tummy. Good nutrition and plenty of exercises will help ward off health problems associated with early aging.

11-14 Years

These are the years of seniority. Age-related diseases can manifest themselves at any time, and your cat will begin to slow down.

15+ Years 

These cats have entered their senior years. They may face weight loss due to age-related issues, and their fur may lose some of its sheens. However, that regal, loving cat remains, waiting for the opportunity to cuddle and nap in your lap. 

How big will my cat get?

When do cats stop growing? While you may have looked at your kitten’s paws and wondered if your sweet little kitten would grow up to be a monster cat, kittens are not the same as puppies. When grown, cats’ paws do not serve as a measure of size. However, their toe beans are truly adorable!

Breed, gender, and other factors all contribute to the size of your particular feline. Certain breeds can reach enormous proportions, while others remain small and dainty. 

Below are some factors that determine the size of your kitty:

Gender

Male cats mature more slowly and are more significant than female cats. Males can grow up to two pounds heavier than their female counterparts.

Fixed or Intact

While neutering or spaying does not affect the size of your cat, as scientists once believed, it can alter their metabolic rate, causing them to gain weight if they prefer sleeping to playing. While most veterinarians recommend changing kittens at six months, shelters and rescue organizations have altered kittens earlier to avoid accidental litter. The weight requirement for early neutering is 4 pounds.

Birth Order 

We all get in love with a runt at some point, even though it will grow up to be smaller than the other kittens in the litter, and this is true for all kittens in the litter. The further down a kitten’s birth line they fall, the smaller they may grow to be as adults, especially if the mother cat is small and gave birth to numerous kittens.

Number of siblings

The total number of kittens in a litter is significant. Too many kittens can significantly increase the amount of milk available from the mother to the kitty. Kittens with inadequate nutrition grow more slowly and eventually become more negligible.

Health of parents

As with any other species, the parents’ health is critical. If your kitten comes from a well-loved and pampered mother, there is a good chance that your cat will grow to the full size determined by genetics. Otherwise, your fur baby may be smaller when fully grown.

Diet

Appropriate nutrition results in proper growth. For the first year of its life, your kitten should be fed a balanced, nutritional diet of kitten food. While some cats may require kitten food longer (such as larger cats that are still growing), the majority of cats weighing between 10 and 12 pounds can transition to adult food between 10 and 12 months of age. Your vet can recommend the most excellent course of action for your cat.

Genetics

Certain genetic factors can indicate whether your cat will be small as an adult. They include dwarfism and any deformity of the bones. During routine check-ups, your veterinarian will detect any abnormalities with your cat. Routine cat health examinations are critical for all cats, but particularly kittens.

My kitten is chubby; will she be big?

When do cats stop growing? Do not confuse weight gain with growth. Kittens, like adult cats, can become overweight. Consider the height and weight percentages of various cat breeds. The charts provide breed-specific height, length, and weight guidelines for your cat.

During the kitten stage, the best source of information about your cat’s weight and size is your veterinarian. In adulthood, these measurements can help you determine where your cat falls on the breed spectrum.

Where to measure for breed-specific charts:

Height: From paw to shoulder, excluding the tail.

Length: From the tip of the nose to the base of the tail. They take tail measurements separately, which does not indicate your cat’s size or whether it is overweight.

Weight: The charts depict an adult weight range. 

Are you still unsure of how long your cat will continue to grow? The following are some popular cat breeds and their expected growth rates.

How big will your cat get?

when do cats stop growing? After examining the various factors that influence cat size and when their growth will cease, it’s clear that each cat is unique, and their growth is dependent on a variety of factors. The excellent way to ensure that your cat reaches the pinnacle of cathood is to feed it a nutritious, well-balanced diet rich in essential vitamins and minerals, plenty of exercises, and plenty of love.

If you do that, you may end up with a large or small cat, and it may take a year or four years; but in the end, you will have a loving feline companion who will accompany you through all the stages of growth.

Some largest breeds of Cats

Bengal Cats

Bengal cats, also known as small leopards,’ can grow to be up to 16 inches long and weigh from 16 and 22 pounds. Male Bengal cats are typically larger than female Bengal cats, as expected. Bengal cats, the largest breed, reach a total size between one and two years. Bengals appear to be:

  • 13 to 16 inches in length
  • approximately 11 inches in height
  • weight between 10 and 22 pounds

British Shorthair Cats

British Shorthair cats mature between three and five years. A British Shorthair will typically weigh between 7 and 18 pounds and stand approximately 20 inches tall. British Shorthair cats appear to be:

  • between 16 and 22 inches in length
  • 14 to 20 inches in height
  • about 7 to 18 pounds in weight

Ragdoll Cats

This breed of cat flops around in your arms when held. While it is not the world’s largest cat, it does take four years to reach full size. Females can reach a height of 9 inches, while males typically reach 11 inches and weigh between 8 and 20 pounds. At first glance, Ragdoll cats appear to be:

  • 15–26 inches in length
  • 9 to 11 inches in length
  • 8 to 20 pounds in weight
  • At the age of four, they are fully grown.

Savannah Cats

Savannah cats, also known as small cheetahs,’ are a crossbreed or hybrid breed. They are a cross between the African Serval and a domestic cat, and how they are bred will determine how long they continue to grow. Calculating the average size of the Savannah is a little more complicated, as they are classified as F1 to F7.

This classification system is based on the number of Serval generations. F1 is the largest class, weighing between 13 and 25 pounds and standing between 14 and 22 inches tall. Between the ages of two and three, Savannah cats cease to grow. At first glance, Savannah cats appear to be:

  • Approximately 20 to 25 inches long
  • 10 to 19 inches tall
  • 12-to-20-pound weight range
  • Fully grown at the ages of two to three years.

See also How long can cats go without food?