October 2007 Issue

Does Your Cat Seem to Be Losing Her Mind?

Cognitive dysfunction syndrome is a common phenomenon among elderly felines.

Your 17-year-old cat, once a fastidious creature, has been ignoring her litter box for the past several months, defecating and sometimes urinating wherever she pleases throughout the house. She spends most of the day either fast asleep or, if awake, staring blankly at a wall. And at night she wanders about the house in the dark, wailing pathetically. Considering that she seems to be in good physical health, you’re apt to wonder whether the cat, at the age of 17 (the equivalent of 85 years or so in a human) might be losing her mind.

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