How Long Do Tabby Cats Live?

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A tabby cat's face.
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A cat's diet, exercise and genetic factors play a major role in her overall health and life span. Coat color and markings, such as tabby stripes, don't affect how long a cat will live. If your tabby cat is healthy and lives indoors, you can expect to enjoy her company between 12 and 18 years, maybe longer. If she's an outdoor cat, the time could be much shorter.

Safe and Healthy for Life

According to Pet Place, a house cat's life expectancy has about tripled over the past 20 years, with cats regularly living into their late teens and even into their early 20s. You play a major role in maximizing your cat's potential; in many ways, her life is in your hands. Though you may feed her the best food, brush her teeth regularly and make sure she's on good terms with her vet, it all may be for nothing if she's an outdoor cat.

Outdoor cats have a much shorter life expectancy, often maxing out around 5 years. An outdoor cat may be the picture of great health, however, that doesn't keep her immune to outside threats. Cars and dogs can be a cat's worst enemy when she lives outside. Other cats are threats as well, as they may harbor lethal viruses spread by fighting. Keeping your cat safe, inside, is perhaps the best way to increase her longevity.


Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.