Persian Cat Life Expectancy- How Long Do They Live?

Persian cat life expectancy

If you're a Persian cat owner then you're a lucky cat parent indeed. Persian cats are a wonderful breed of cat with their fluffy luxurious coats and their round flat faces. 

They bring immense pleasure and joy to our lives with their endearing personality. 

At some point in every Persian cat owners mind, a certain question will cross your mind regarding a Persian cats life expectancy. It's something we all dread to think about. I know before I bought my Persian cat it was something I looked at as any budding cat owner considers before buying a certain breed of cat. 

There wasn't a lot of information online regarding a Persian cats life expectancy, more often than not there was some quite conflicting information. 

In this post, I hope to shed some light on this question and hopefully provide you with a research-backed answer. There are, of course, many variables to the answer of which we will look at in this post.

Persian cat lifespan factors

A Persian cat's lifespan depends on quite a few factors as mentioned above. We'll look closely at what they are below.

Indoor or outdoor Persian cat

I'll start with the most obvious factor which is where your cat is kept. If your Persian cat is an outdoor cat then their life expectancy will be significantly reduced. According to WebMD the average lifespan of an outdoor cat can be anywhere from 2-5 years old as they're exposed to many dangers. 

I know most Persian cat owners do tend to keep their cats inside as it's easier to maintain their fur and Persians, in general, are better suited to a mainly indoor lifestyle. That's not to say a Persian can't be a great outdoor cat as they can but they will need their fur brushing even more than an indoor cat.

Breeding heritage and genetic makeup

As with humans genetics play a massive part in life expectancy. Persian cats do suffer heredity health issues such as polycystic kidney disease (PKD), breathing issues, excessive tearing, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). Some of these health issues can be bred out of the Persian cat, often reputable breeders will prove that their kittens are clear from the above diseases and they don't run in the family bloodline. 

Preventative breeding is one way to ensure that you get a Persian cat with a higher chance of not developing any of the above diseases and issues but there isn't unfortunately anyway to guarantee this as such. You could buy a Persian kitten that's from a pedigree show winner and proven clear bloodline and still develop the known diseases as Persians are prone to these issues. There can be traces in the bloodline from many generations before that are difficult to trace.

It's needless to say shelter cats and cats that have been rescued do tend to suffer more from the above diseases as it's very difficult to find out any information regarding their DNA. It's important to note this isn't the case in every instance though.

Food and Diet

Your Persian cat's diet plays a vital role in health and well-being. Feeding a well-balanced wet and dry food diet will ensure your cat has all the minerals that he/she needs to keep them healthy and vitalised. 

Buying the most expensive or cat food that's perceived as the "best" won't necessarily prolong your cat's life but it will contribute towards an overall more healthy cat. 

I recently wrote a post on the best Persian cat food.  

Water Intake 

Water intake is critical to every living being and cats are no different they require a constant supply of fresh, clean water. Some cats drink more water than others but there is a distinct collation between cat health and water intake. 

The average Persian cat needs 1 ounce/28ml of water per pound of body weight. 

I recently wrote an article on cat water fountains- These are a great way to get your cat to drink more.

Eye care

Most Persian cats tend to suffer from eye issues, my own Persian cat Milo has runny eyes that require daily cleaning. Although this isn't critical to a Persian cats life expectancy all these factors do compound if they're not taken care of.

I wrote an article on the exact eye care procedure I follow with my own Persian cat. You can find it here How to clean your Persian cat's eyes.


Grooming your Persian cat might not seem like it would have much of an effect on your Persian cat's life expectancy but you'd be surprised. Persians are a long-haired breed that requires lots of brushing to avoid hairballs. Over time hairballs can become dangerous if they become lodged in your cat's stomach. 

General Healthcare

Keeping your Persian in tiptop condition will go a long way to ensuring a long and healthy life. Cleaning your cat's teeth, eyes, and grooming are all good practice and something I recommend you do. 

Yearly vaccinations are also important to ensure your cat is protected from any potential diseases, this is especially true if your Persian cat ventures outdoors. 


Spaying and neutering your cat is quite a subjective topic and one that can often produce mixed opinions. One thing is for sure, cat's that are spayed or neutered do tend to live longer and are safe from testicular or ovarian cancer that's prevalent in cats that haven't been spayed/neutered.

Persian cat Life Expectancy 

Looking at some of the research carried out it's hard to put an exact lifespan on a Persian cat but a general consensus is 12-17 years, with a median of 14.1 years.

This information was taken from pet insurance data from Sweden and veterinary clinic data from England

In the Swedish study of the Persian group (Persians, Chinchilla, Himalayan and Exotic) 76% of this group lived to 10 years or more and 52% lived to 12.5 years or more.

Similarly, the study carried out in England found that Persians typically lived for 12-17 years with an average of 14.1 years. 

Obviously, there are cases of Persians living to 20 years (this isn't uncommon) and, of course, sad cases of Persians living substantially less and dying before their 10th birthday. 

I think from the studies above we can draw a conclusion that 12-17 years is a good "rough" guide with 14-15 years looking like more of an accurate average.

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