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Elderly cat with dementia keeps turning up to his former home

cat with dementia
(Image credit: TikTok / @dingleberry_pie)

When Marcella opened the front door to her home, she wondered why a ginger cat was standing on the doorstep desperate to get in.

But then she discovered the poor elderly moggy was called Fred and not only did he used to live there, he also has dementia.

Videoed and posted on TikTok (opens in new tab), Fred can be seen turning his head to peer inside Marcella's home in British Columbia, Canada, while also stepping forward in the hope of gaining access.

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With her heart going out to Fred as he meows for attention, Marcella can be heard offering food. She later revealed she tried to discover where Fred currently lives and noticed his owners were looking for him just 20 minutes later.

It means she can now reunite the cat with his pet parents if he ever goes astray again although, given his condition, they are trying to keep him inside. 

In this instance, he'd found his way out of a door that had been left open by mistake, before wandering a block-and-a-half to where he used to live. Prior to that, Fred had frequently been seen around the neighborhood, unafraid to approach people for a cuddle.

Fred is well-cared for, living in a quiet street with lots of loving people around. “His humans love him very much,” Marcella says.

Feline dementia or ‘cognitive dysfunction’ is common. As with humans, dementia tends to affect older cats and symptoms include meowing excessively, anxiety, and changes in sleep-wake patterns. 

Some medications can lessen the symptoms of dementia and may stop your cat from meowing all the time but there is no cure.

Investing in a cat puzzle feeder toy can keep a feline mentally active in their old age and potentially stimulate the growth of new neurons in the brain, while it's important to keep a consistent day-to-day schedule to reduce confusion. 

David Crookes has been a journalist for more than 20 years and he has written for a host of magazines, newspapers, websites and books including World of Animals, BBC Earth, Dogs and Canines, Gadget and The Independent. Born in England, he lives in a household with two cats but he’s also keenly interested in the differences between the huge number of dog breeds — in fact, you can read many of his breed guides here on PetsRadar. With a lifelong passion for technology, too, he’s always on the lookout for useful devices that will allow people to spend more time with their pets.