Charlie’s Whiskers

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Charlie's Whiskers
Charlie's Whiskers

Lately I have noticed that Charlie’s whiskers are growing.  They seem to be getting longer.  He will be 2 years old on July 23rd and so it made me wonder if a cat’s whiskers grow throughout their life or through a certain period of their life.  Does anyone know?

Just measured his whiskers and the longest one is 3.5″ whereas the longest one on the other side is only 3″.  Trigg, on the other hand, has always had long whiskers that frame his face and make him look even more like the prima donna he is.

On a side note, my cat, Rags, when he went through chemo, didn’t lose his fur, he lost his whiskers, one by one.  When they grew back, they were very curly!

Caymus' Whiskers ©Amy Dean 2010
Caymus' Whiskers ©Amy Dean 2010

Caymus came to my mom with very blunted whiskers.  We understand from the vet that the other kittens in the litter bit his whiskers (like they were string) and Murphy was not one of Caymus’ littermates so this behavior did not continue when Caymus came to live with my parents and Murph.  As a result, Caymus now has gloriously long beautiful whiskers that extend well beyond his face.

What has happened to your kitty’s whiskers as she or he has grown up?  Anything unusual?

Comments (14)

  1. I just noticed last night that Annabella’s whiskers seemed to be getting longer. She’s just a little over a year old. Have you seen the show, Cats 101 on Pet Planet? They said the longest whiskers on a cat were 4 1/2″ long. Sounds like Charlie could beat that if they keep growing!

  2. I’m so happy this subject has come up. I have two male Ragdolls named Frank and Dean who are 11 months old. I noticed that Dean likes to chew on Franks whiskers and keeps them relatively short. Could anyone let me know if they have had this problem with their cats and if so are there any solutions to the problem. I’m just not sure if this chewing will have any long term effects on Franks health or well being.
    Fred
    PS. thank you Jennifer

    1. Fred, I guess I would ask your vet. Is Dean (GREAT NAME BTW – my last name is Dean) the dominate cat? How does Frank react to it? If Frank seems to be fine by it – then I would guess it wouldn’t be that much of a problem.

      I do know that whiskers are used for balance and also for judging whether or not a kitty can get through a certain area – like between two posts on a stairway. So if Frank is doing fine with that, then my guess is that he is OK. Still not a bad thing to bring up at the next vet visit.

      BTW – My dad actually had an uncle named, “Frank Dean!”

  3. Thank you, and I will be sure to ask my Vet and as a note as far as I can tell it doesn’t seem to bother Frank,he just looks a little silly. BTW named after my two favorite singers.

  4. My ragdoll has whiskers on his legs where that little extra pad is.(is that called the dewclaw on a cat? I don’t know) I’ve never noticed this on any other cats. Is it just a ragdoll thing? Does anyone else’s ragdoll have leg whiskers?

  5. I’m not entirely sure, but yes, I think whiskers will grow until a cat reaches maturity (about 3 years for a Rag). Raina’s longest whiskers measure about 4 – 4.5 and she just turned 4.

  6. My Louie is going to be 9 years old in March and his whiskers grow with his weight or if he loses one. When he was heavier his whiskers were longer. Our Vet told me that the whiskers on a cat will grow to be slightly longer than the widest part of his body. To be able to judge if he can fit thru things or if a space is too small for him to go thru.
    Have you noticed Charlie gaining weight? or getting a bit wider? That may explain it.
    Louie’s longest whisker was about 5 inches, I found it on my pillow! Cats shed whiskers just like they shed fur, and just like our hair, they never stop growing.

    1. Lisa – yes, I was thinking that might be the case with Charlie man. I have heard of that before. Although he hasn’t gotten much larger (wider) in the past 2 weeks – but his whiskers seem to have grown. Thanks for responding.

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