How to Keep Outside Cats Warm in Winter
It’s that time of year again — where your feline friend starts looking for ways to cuddle up in front of the fireplace, find a nice warm spot near the heater vent, or even scramble up the tree outside to get some sun.
If you have an outdoor cat (or several), then keeping them warm and cozy in winter can be quite a challenge. They won’t want to come inside no matter how many heated cat beds or hammocks you make available for them. The good news is that there are plenty of ways you can help your kitty stay warm and happy outdoors even during the freezing winter months.
Install a Heated Outdoor Scraper
Cats are naturally very clean animals and they will clean themselves — but it’s easier if you help them. Cats who are shedding heavily (especially pregnant and nursing mothers) may benefit from having their shedding fur removed by a human. Put a heated outdoor scraper near the cat’s favourite scratching posts. Cats will appreciate the extra warmth while they clean themselves.
Put Blankets Out for Kittens and Older Cats
Kittens are best kept indoors until they are at least 12 weeks old. However, if you have a litter of kittens and you have no choice but to let them stay outside, put a warm blanket near their bedding area. Kittens under 12 weeks old are less likely to survive outdoor conditions because they are prone to hypothermia. Put a warm blanket over their bedding area so they can snuggle up, stay warm, and thrive.
Install a Warm Box/Hammock
If your cat is a hammock or box kind of kitty, you’re in luck — because these are easy to make and put in place for your furry friend. A warm box is basically a wooden box with a blanket draped over the top and sides. It works like a heated cat bed, but with a more enclosed feel. A warm box is a good choice for cats who like to feel enclosed and safe. You can make a warm box from an old wooden crate (make sure it isn’t rotten or it could fall apart during the winter) or you can buy a premade wooden box on the Internet.
Lay Out Yummy Snacks
Some cats love treats as much as people do. If you want to give your cat a warm snack they won’t forget, try a cup of hot, buttered rum or hot chocolate. A warm cup of deliciousness is a great way to keep your feline friend warm as they lounge in their favourite place outside. Coffee is another good option; it’s warm, smells great, and will keep your kitty awake and active for hours.
Put out Cardboard Boxes
Like blankets, cardboard boxes are good for keeping kittens and senior cats warm. However, you may have to put them inside a box to keep them warm. Cats also have a tendency to pee in cardboard, so make sure you put a blanket or a towel in the box with them or they’ll get cold and wet. Make sure the boxes aren’t too big, though. Your cat may get lost in a giant box and not be able to find the opening. Plus, large boxes may be too warm for your little friend.
Wrapping It Up
Keeping cats warm in winter can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to be. If you want to keep your kitty happy and healthy in the winter, you may have to put some extra effort into it. It can get very cold when the weather turns chilly, so you’ll want to make sure your cat is warm and safe.