The freezing weather and lack of sunlight that accompany winter can cause issues for all of us. Unfortunately, whereas humans can simply throw on a sweater or turn up the heat when we get cold, our furry feline friends don’t have the same luxury. As with humans, winter can create a number of problems for cats. Luckily, following these simple tips should make it easy for you to ensure your cat stays comfortable throughout the winter.
Kitty Comfort: How to Make Your Favorite Feline Comfortable During Winter
Provide Them with Plenty of Warmth
It doesn’t matter whether you have an indoor cat or one who loves to play outside. When winter sets in, the colder temperatures make it more difficult for your cat to keep itself warm. This is precisely why you should focus on creating a warm indoor environment to allow the cat to escape the worst of the cold. Heated cat beds and heating pads are a favorite of many cats, and you might find yours loves to spend hours lying on the warmth they create. In addition, you should also consider having any necessary HVAC maintenance performed before the worst cold comes, as this will ensure that the interior of your home remains warm and comfortable for both you and your pets.
Make Sure They Can Enjoy the Sun
Cats also love to lay stretched out in the sun, which allows them to warm themselves up without spending any excess energy. For this reason, you might consider rearranging your furniture so that you have a chair or couch in a place that gets plenty of daytime sunlight. Placing a cat bed on or near the window sill also allows your cat to enjoy the sun’s warming rays, but you need to make sure your windows are well insulated to shield out the cold.
Increase Their Calorie Intake
Cats use more calories to keep themselves warm during the winter. Scientific studies have shown that cats eat more during the winter than in the summer. For this reason, you might want to consider giving your cat a bit extra food each day to cover this additional need for calories. However, it is still important to watch your cat’s weight and to cut down on their food intake if they start getting too fat. If in doubt, it’s always a good idea to consult with your vet to ensure you don’t risk overfeeding.
Watch Where You Put the Litter Box
The cold weather can be especially hard on young kittens, older cats and those with health problems. Although keeping your cat’s litter box in the basement or out in the garage may help to keep unpleasant odors out of your home, the problem is that these places also tend to get much colder in the winter. If you do have a cat that is more vulnerable, it’s a good idea to move their litter box somewhere a bit warmer during the winter.
Don’t Forget to Keep Your Cat Active
Even cats who usually spend most of their time outside tend to become less active and stay indoors more often in the winter. Unfortunately, this drop in activity level can lead to weight gain and also make your cat bored and unhappy. This is why it is especially important that you remember to play with your cat for at least a few minutes every day.
As you can imagine, caring for outdoor cats is quite a bit different than caring for indoor cats. Indoor cats tend to need much more attention and care. That being said, it is essential that you take the time to make sure your cat is comfortable during the winter—no matter whether they spend most of their time inside or outdoors. By following these basic tips, you can help protect your furry friend from the cold and make sure they stay happy, healthy and comfortable all year round.