Caring for your cat in winter
30th June 2014
During the cold winter months it’s important to ensure that your cat is happy and well cared for by keeping him warm and ensuring he has access to plenty of resources. Take a look at our top tips to help your cat through the cold snap.
Beware of anti-freeze
Anti-freeze is poisonous to cats and many are drawn to it due to its sweet smell and taste. If you use anti-freeze, wipe up any spills straight away. Clean your cat’s paws regularly to remove any anti-freeze they may have stepped in. This will prevent him ingesting harmful substances when he cleans himself. The following symptoms may be a sign that your cat has anti-freeze poisoning:
- Appearing drunk
- Trouble breathing
- Increased thirst
- Increased urination
If your cat displays any of these symptoms, take him to the vet as soon as possible. Take a look at Calder Vets' advice on the dangers of anti-freeze.
It is always important for your cat to have free access to fresh water at any time of the year. This is particularly important in the winter because if cats do not have enough water to drink, they may seek a water source elsewhere which could be contaminated with anti-freeze. Provide plenty of fresh water sources around your home that your cat has access to at all times.
Stock up on food
Make sure you have plenty of cat food in the cupboard in case adverse weather prevents you going out to the shops. So, while you’re stocking up with your own supplies for the winter, don’t forget to buy plenty of food for your cat.
Check your car for cats
Cats sometimes shelter under cars in the winter so check the underside of your car is cat free before setting off. When it’s particularly cold, look beneath your car bonnet as cats can climb inside in search of a warm engine.
If cats have regular access to the outdoors, preventing them free access in the winter could be stressful. Instead of blocking access, provide shelter outside so that your cat can hide from the rain or snow whilst he is roaming.
Check your cat flap
During snowy periods, remove any snow that has built up outside the cat flap so that your cat can come and go freely. When it’s really cold, condensation may cause the door of your cat flap to freeze closed. Check your cat flap regularly and if any ice has built up, push the flap gently to remove it.
Warm sleeping spots
Give your cat access to plenty of warm sleeping spots that are free of draughts. Sleeping spots off the ground tend to be warmer and less draughty.
Safe hiding places
When it’s cold, we tend to do our entertaining indoors. If you are having people round, make sure your cat has a safe place to retreat to if the noise gets too much for him.
Play with your cat
Like us, cats can suffer from the winter blues too! Keep your cat entertained by playing with him regularly to keep those blues at bay.