Sunday, December 1, 2019

The Way She Hears It

My cats are growing old, even the young one. I dislike that, but will probably be unable to reverse the trend. I am thinking in particular about Josie, my eldest. She is 15. To be truthful, my Chubs appears to be in good shape. She is no longer actually chubby, and is a pretty good weight for her size. She eats well, her litter-box visits are untroubled, she climbs the stairs to the bed without signs of strain and she even leaps from the cat-tree by the window over to the bed, and vice versa, when she wishes to take a short-cut. She does make ‘old-cat’ sounds, though I make ‘old-man’ sounds now… But I think she is becoming deaf.

Today, after a long while without them, I decided to give some Temptation Treats to the beasts (except for poor Cammie, who can receive nothing but her Z/D food). I shook the bag and cats came tumbling out from every crevice in the apartment – except for Josie (and poor Cammie, who knows she won’t get any). Josie remained on the bed, slumbering but not asleep. Renn, who had been unconscious in the bedroom, heard the inviting sound and hurried out, but not the Great White.

I then realised that there have been many instances recently when I had announced ‘dinner’ or ‘snack’, and Josie had ignored me, until I came up to her and repeated the words at close-range. She is also startled more often by my approach, or, rather, by my appearance near her, since I wonder now if she can hear my approach.

But deafness is, perhaps, no surprise. I am dubious of the oft-reported age-equivalency of cats and humans. According to Catster, Josie is no longer even a ‘senior’, but a ‘geriatric’, having reached the equivalent of 76 years for a human. I figure that if the average cat lives, all things being equal, to be about 18 or 19 years (splitting the difference makes it 18 and a half), and a human’s expectancy is about 80, then Josie is 65, which, given her health, seems a better estimate to me than 76.

In any case, I think that some difficulty in hearing, or even complete deafness, is a relatively minor complaint for an old cat, considering what she could be suffering. There is much to beware, and my guard is always up for my beasts; however, I am thankful my Chubs is not facing worse. Besides, she may be ignoring what I do and say due to deafness, or simply because she’s a cat. I may never know for sure…



  1. If her only complaint at 15 is deafness, then that is pretty good going. Good on you for running a rest home for these lovely cats.

  2. Not a nice thing to say..but..we ALL get
    old John..Even us humans.. escaping the
    great one in the the meantime,
    we will, and do enjoy our little friends
    and their little ways, bless them..! :).
    And..people like myself certainly enjoy
    reading about their antics..! :o).

  3. Oh yes, though one would wish she had not lost some of her hearing, nonetheless that is a better circumstance for sweet Josie. I love thinking of the rest all tumbling out of every nook and cranny! I hope that meant Raleigh too. :-) He is a bit more hesitant I think? All of the cats had a fun time. There is a new one out, not sure if you can get it, made by Friskies that is catnip flavored and Katie actually feels the effects of it. She is far and away more bouncy and active after having it. She craves them more than the others.

  4. I, too, think if she has only a bit of deafness at 15 she's doing very well. I hope it won't be complete hearing loss, but if that happens, I'm sure she'll adjust with your love and care. ♥

  5. Thank goodness she is doing so well at 15! I myself struggle with hearing loss in one ear and it's annoying. But with cats it's different. Thankfully she has no worries about being taken care of!

  6. I remember when my last cat (who lived to be 20) suddenly aged, it
    seemed over night. She must have gone deaf, and at that she started
    yodeling every time I was out of sight! Hard on my ears, and I figure
    she could not hear herself! That was when she was around 16 and lasted
    until she left me. Do hope Josie is just taking a treat break.

  7. I think Josie is doing extremely well if her only physical problem is a hearing loss. That, no doubt, is due to the great care you give your cats. But as Willie noted, we all age. However, I started counting backwards years ago, so I'm only about 18 now! :-)

  8. Cats do adapt so well with the loss of any of their senses, much better than we humans.
    Eric went completely deaf almost overnight about 2 years before he left us. He had always had a problem with his ears and we cleaned them regularly. We took him to the vet and he could see some wax deep down and gave us a different lotion. About a week or so after starting it, I was doing his twice daily ear clean and he shook his head. A rock hard lump of wax shot out. The amazing thing is that even though the wax had only obstructed one ear, he went from total deafness to hearing again. Our vet said it happens that way sometimes, but it made us so happy that he could hear us again.

  9. Angel is also 15, but she's become skinny and more meowy recently. We have an appt with the vet on Thursday morning. As for going deaf, I believe The 'O' Cat Sweetie is getting hard-of-hearing; she's not noticed me a few times, and then jumped when I knocked on the deck so she could feel the vibrations. The day I am able to pick her up in my arms, is the day I walk inside with her, and she'll be a housecat for the rest of her life!

  10. dai$y, who turns 17 next may, has some hearing issues as well; we used to think it was "selective hearing" on her part, but have realized recently that, like Josie, while maybe not completely deaf, she is loosing some of that "ability to hear the treat bag from 8 miles away " ♥♥♥♥♥

  11. Yes, she is doing quite well and maybe is just enjoying her retirement years.

  12. I'd say she is doing very well. Sasha has definitely lost some of his hearing in the past year or so, but like your Josie, he's still doing well at 19. I'm thankful for each day he's with me though I know that time is getting shorter.

  13. In the great scheme of things being a bit deaf, while living in the Cozy Apartment, is not something too terrible for a cat except of missing out on the goodies now and again. I am sure you will adjust to make sure she gets her due when due

  14. Hard of hearing or not giving a care, both are common at that age I think. So glad she's still healthy!