Do Cats Know When They Are Dying?

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Do Cats Know When They Are Dying?

You might be wondering what it feels like when a cat dying is near? If you have a cat and have noticed that your cat behaves differently, you are at the right blog. Owning a pet such as a cat can be a lovely and life-changing experience for almost everyone out there.

The thought of knowing that your cats are dying can bring all the cat owners to weep, and although it is heartbreaking and gruesome, it is something that cannot be avoided. In this article, let’s look at some reasons for cats dying, what you can do to help and whether cats know they are dying.

Behavior Changes

It can be a challenging task when it comes to taking care of a cat’s health. Unlike humans, most cats do not show any initial symptoms of a disease that’s causing them to be in pain.

It is, however, your job to make sure that your cat is out of the danger circle and lives healthily. However, when it is dying, there might be some symptoms that you need to look out for as cats can understand and accept that their death is near.

Common Signs of a Cat Suffering

When humans are sick, they show multiple symptoms, leading them to get help and recover. When it comes to cats, it’s quite the opposite as they do not show symptoms as freely as humans do. If you have a playful, energetic cat and have noticed a decrease in playtime or try to hide in dark corners of the house, then this might mean that your cat’s health is declining.

Cat lying weakly on floor

Some common illnesses that may lead to a decrease in the cat’s health level and may cause cat dying are diabetes mellitus, kidney disease, hyperthyroidism, certain levels of cancer, etc. These primary diseases have a long-lasting negative effect on your little loved one and may be the reason for the cat dying.

Decrease in Weight

As your cat reaches a certain age after maturity, such as around 10-12 years old, you might start noticing that it isn’t eating the same proportion of food it used to eat. This may lead to weight loss as cats sense that they are sick and will not feel like munching on any treats or cat food.

You may even notice that your cat’s ribs and bones are starting to protrude out and becoming more prominent as they walk. The majority of cats start eating less when they begin losing muscles and hence causes a decrease in protein levels in their body, leading to cats dying.

Looking for Darkness

Before a cat owner can fully understand and accept their cat dying, cats in the particular sense that their time is near. Instead of trying to ignore and play around, they will look for areas where they can be alone, away from all sorts of human and animal distractions as well as noises.

Some energetic extroverted cats might even start being more agitated than usual as changes occur in their bodies, leading to a cat dying. On the other hand, some introverted and shy cats might not seek solitude. Instead, they would sit around all day watching you go on about your day as they feel comfortable around you.

While your cat’s body and the immune system are breaking down internally, they might feel the need to either be in a place where they feel safe or completely abandon themselves from humans.

Cat in the dark

Less Drinking

When a cat is dying, you might notice that besides not eating properly, your cat might stop drinking water as much as it used to. Since your cat’s level of activity or playtime has decreased, your cat will not burn any calories and will not feel the need to hydrate their mouths.

A cat’s body knows that it needs time to digest and process food and drinks. So when the cat is dying, its body naturally ignores the need for food and proper nutrients.

Cat Odor

When your beloved kitty reaches the age where it is dying, it will stop grooming itself, and due to this, it might start to look unclean and messy.

Although cats love to groom themselves by licking their furs, they won’t have enough energy to look out for themselves when they are dying. As a result, they might start to smell bad. This occurs due to toxins building up and their organs shutting down.

At this stage, your cat might start to have seizures and have abnormal breathing, which leads to the cat dying soon. If you feel that the smell is starting to increase, try visiting your vet, who will prescribe proper medications to help your cat.

Gray cat sleeping curled up

Ways to Protect and Love Your Cat

After visiting your vet and confirming that your cat is dying soon, you should shift all your energy and attention to your cat, who needs it the most. In their last days, you should make sure that your cat is warm and in a safe and quiet environment away from all sorts of distractions that may cause them to be depressed. You could also help your cat groom itself and make sure that they have proper food and drinks nearby.

Besides this, you could also give them treats or show them their favorite activities so that they know you are caring for them. However, if you notice that your cat does not like spending time with you, it is best to keep your distance for your cat’s sake until the cat’s dying stage is over.


Although the process of accepting a cat dying can be a heartbreaking and traumatic experience, you should still do your best to ensure that your cat’s last days are not causing them stress and anxiety.

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