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How to Care of Your Cat During Winter?
Like us, animals have to endure the frigid wintertime. Hence, you should be aware that cats are often warm-weather creatures seeking comfy resting places. Even though they frequently find refuge on their own, it would be a blessing for them if you could provide some additional care to keep them warm and cosy.
So, if you are willing to learn how to keep your cat warm in winter, here is a guide for you!
Tips for Taking Care of Cats During Winter
1. Look for Frostbites
Every cat owner should know that exposure to frigid temperatures can cause frostbite in cats. Typically, it begins at the tips of their ears, moves down their tails, and ends at their toes. As a result, always wipe your cat's face and feet when they enter the house after a stroll outside.
Frostbites typically have a grey or light colour. So, you can call the vet immediately if you notice something similar and are unsure if it is frostbite.
2. Buy Some Anti-Freezing Water Bowls
Most cats enjoy having a bowl of food and water placed out for them. In this manner, they can satisfy their hunger and thirst while roaming across the neighbourhood.
However, you must take precautions to prevent freezing if you keep a bowl for them because of the chilly weather. If you reside in an area with severe weather, think about buying them a heated bowl. This way, your cats will be able to sip water whenever they want effortlessly.
3. Consider Providing a Balanced Nutrition
Diet is the best way to maintain a cat's health all year round. Hence, you must pay close attention to their diet during the winter. In this regard, older cats and young kittens are particularly sensitive to low temperatures. So, for a proper diet, you can visit a vet for consultation. This way, they can thoroughly examine your cat and take into account the cat's size, age, general health, and any existing medical issues.
Your veterinarian could advise giving vitamins and supplements to a significantly immunocompromised cat. While cats may eat more during the winter, they also drink slightly less water; hence it might cause dehydration. To ensure that your cat gets adequate water, you must be watchful.
4. Check Your Cat’s Paw
Cats frequently lick their paws as part of their self-grooming. So, you may need to inspect your cats' paws for antifreeze whenever they come inside after a walk outside.
In order to prevent radiators in vehicles and trucks from freezing, antifreeze, which is a coolant with vivid yellow and green colouring, is mixed with water. Your cats may lick up these hazardous coolants if they see them in front of them, even though they are poisonous to animals. All this makes checking your cat's paws after walks essential.
5. Build a Cat Shelter
Some cats can venture outside in the winter if the temperature is just right. But, the weather in the winter can change from day to day. While the cat is outside, the weather can quickly drop, and you might not be there to let them inside. A winter cat shelter can come in extremely handy in this situation.
An insulated box with a small opening at the front to let the cats in and out can serve as a basic winter cat shelter. These will enable the cat to stay warm, at least until you come home, by the cat's own body heat. A heating pad is one of the more sophisticated solutions, but it needs an electrical source.
6. Buy them Toys
In the winter, it would be preferable to keep your cats largely indoors. Hence, they require a home activity that will keep them fully occupied for that.
You might give your kitties some wonderful cat toys that will keep them entertained and highly engaged. Also, consider engaging in a game of hide and seek with your cats while feeding them delectable cat treats. Lastly, when they discover their toys, you can treat them.
7. Buy Winter Clothes for Cats
Winter clothes can be a lifesaver for certain cats, especially hairless kinds. As they lack fur, hairless cats find it exceedingly challenging to maintain body heat and are more vulnerable to climate-related issues. If your cat has severe sensitivity, hypoallergenic materials are advised. Additionally, make sure the material is soft enough not to harm the cat's skin as it may rub against it.
Make sure to purchase a coat for your cat before winter arrives if you plan to invest in one. You can also measure them with tape since you will need to know their dimensions. Also, you must ensure the cat is relaxed and not under excessive stress while wearing clothes.
8. Keep Them Away From Hot Stuff
While keeping your cats warm is imperative, it's as crucial to protecting them from external heat sources like furnaces, space heaters, and hot radiators. Your cats should always maintain a reasonable distance from a fireplace since flying sparks from one can seriously harm them. If your cat is inside the house and you need to go elsewhere, avoid leaving them near the space heater.
9. Keep Air Conditioning at Right Temperature
Avoiding exposure to abrupt temperature changes is one of the essential parts of winter cat care. Unfavourable environmental factors can stress cats out and make them more likely to acquire diseases. In this regard, you should also take humidity into account, and a cat's respiratory system can be harmed by excessive dryness.
To safeguard your cat's health, you should keep an eye out for symptoms of dehydration, such as coughing. So, spraying a little water into the surroundings roughly every four hours is another approach to help your cat. Although they can be pricey, humidifiers are a more efficient option. Also, even if it's cold outside, you should leave your windows open during the day.
10. Keep the Litter Box Inside
Litter boxes smell terrible, and we are all aware of it. Your home might quickly start to smell awful if you add heat. No matter how much you might be tempted to relocate your cat’s litter box to the garage or the basement, those spaces tend to cool down more quickly than any other part of your house. So, maintain the cleanliness of the litter box, use a deodoriser, and let your cat relieve itself in a warm location in the house.
11. Give Your Cat a Lot of Cuddles
The cheapest, most pleasurable method of keeping your cat warm in the cold also comes at no cost. When it's cold outside, your cat will come to you for warmth, so this is the perfect opportunity to curl up on the couch with your pet and binge-watch your favourite show.
12. Keep Your Cat Within Visibility
It's crucial to make sure individuals see your cat in the dark, especially by cars. So, you can buy a reflective collar or LED before it gets dark in the mornings and evenings for a quick and easy fix.
How to Prevent Winter Health Risks of Cats?
A few prevention methods for health risks for cats include:
- As soon as your cat enters the house, towel him off and keep your environment humidified.
- To get rid of ice, salt, and chemicals, wash and dry your cat's feet and tummy.
- During chilly weather, give your cat as little bathing as possible.
- Before stepping outside, apply petroleum jelly or another paw protector to the pads of your cat’s paws to help protect them from chemicals and salt.
- Make sure to completely clean up any spills from your car, and think about switching to propylene glycol-containing items rather than ethylene glycol-containing ones.
- In the winter, cats expend more energy attempting to remain warm. Hence, feeding your cat a little bit more might supply much-needed calories during the colder months.
- Lastly, keep your cat indoors as much as you can.
Hence, consider this advice as mentioned above on how to keep your cat warm in winter to keep your cats in excellent health over the winter. These tips will only have you work a little hard and are simple to adopt. Also, it is advised that you give your cats more attention throughout the winter and provide them with food at regular intervals. If you have concerns about your cat's health, always see your veterinarian.