Cats in Winter: Helpful Tips

When the cold season arrives, the question arises for many cat owners: should I let my cat outside in winter or should I keep it indoors? Most cats prefer warmth. They not only like to lie on the windowsill above the heater but also on warm laptops – preferably when their masters have something important to do. Many outdoor enthusiasts find the cold season anything but pleasant and are happy to voluntarily forego their outdoor activities. Some simply shorten their time to go out, while others trudge velvet paws through the snow as they always have.

Even Outdoorsmen are Freezing

Either way: even outdoorsmen freeze in cold temperatures. That is why it makes sense to install a cat flap so that your cat can get back into the warm quickly and easily if necessary. If a cat flap is not an option, there are alternatives: For example, you can place a basket with pillows and blankets in the garage. Important, even if it is meant well: Do not put your cat on a coat in winter and do not wear collars. This allows the four-legged friends to quickly get caught on branches and protruding objects. Even in summer, this is not good, but in winter it is all the more devastating because there is a risk of frostbite!

As the temperatures drop, your cat’s energy needs also increase. Therefore, you should make sure that your darling gets enough high-energy cat food. It is quite normal for the animals to eat a little more than usual in winter. It is also important that the cat has access to ice-free water if it is very cold. A heat source such as a pocket warmer under the bowl will slow down the freezing process. If you have a pond in the garden, you should secure it. When there is light frost, only a very thin layer of ice forms. There is a risk that the cat will enter the pond, break-in, and drown.

Please also note that cats that are mostly in the apartment have less thick fur than their outdoor colleagues. If you want to get your cat used to being outdoors in general, you shouldn’t start doing so in the cold season.

Cats Remain Cats

When your darling returns from a foray, you should make sure that ice and road salt are removed from their paws. You should also check the gaps between the balls in any case, as the animals can quickly get into foreign bodies, which can lead to painful inflammation. If your cat can put up with it, the paws can be cleaned with lukewarm water and a soothing cream (for example marigold ointment) applied.

Warning: you should definitely leave kittens in the apartment in cold weather. Under supervision, the little furry friends are allowed to go on a discovery tour for a maximum of 15 minutes. The downy baby fur is not made for the icy temperatures, because the little ones do not yet have a warming and water-repellent undercoat.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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