How Cold Is Too Cold For Outdoor Cats
Its fair to say that cats used to being outdoors may be more acclimated to chilly weather and can therefore cope better in the cold. Even so, that doesnt mean outdoor cats should be out all day and night when temperatures are averaging 45°F or colder. Especially if they dont have a safe, warm place like a barn or an outdoor bed to retire to.
Cats with health problems, senior cats, and kittens are all much more susceptible to the cold. Even if they usually go outside, you should keep them indoors and closely monitor them during winter as the temperature dips.
How Do You Make A Cat House In Cold Weather
How do you make a cat house in cold weather?
How do outdoor cats stay warm in the winter?;The easiest solution is to buy a heated, water-resistant shelter made especially for cats. Look for shelters with heated beds designed to warm up to the cats normal body temperature. This makes sure the cats stay toasty warm when its really cold outside.
At what temperature can a cat freeze to death?;Once the temperature dips below freezing she becomes susceptible to the effects of hypothermia and frostbite, both of which can eventually lead to death. Hypothermia is what happens when your cats body temperature gets dangerously low.
Where do cats sleep outside at night?;Cats sleep outside in places that are warm, safe and secluded. Unlike people, cats do not usually sleep at night. Felines are crepuscular creatures which means that they are most active during the hours between early evening and dawn. As predators, cats take advantage of the night to hunt.
Keeping Cats Comfortable In Hot Weather
When the weather is warm, many cats will be in their element. Your cat will initially become more active and playful. This can soon turn to lethargy and irritability, though. Cats grow uncomfortable when too hot.
Even a cat that does not experience a health concern will struggle with excess heat. As an owner, it is your responsibility to keep your cat at the right temperature. There are several ways that you can do this. Most of them will not even require you to spend any money.
Managing Sun Exposure
Given half a chance, a cat will gravitate toward the sunshine. This will initially be relaxing but can make a cat uncomfortable in the longer term. Youll need to be mindful of sunburn or worse.
Managing the sun exposure of an indoor cat is simplejust close curtains and drapes when your cat has spent enough time basking by a window. You can always re-open them later when your cat has cooled off a little.
Outdoor cats are more challenging. Cats may travel so they can sunbathe without disturbance. This can be dangerous. If the cat grows overheated, it may become disoriented. It will struggle to find its way home.
Keep your outdoor cat at home during peak temperatures. Let your cat have an early-morning patrol, bringing it inside at around 11 am. The cat should then stay home until early evening when the suns heat is less intense.
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What About Air Conditioning
Although the temperature outside might fry an egg on the sidewalk the temperatures can get somewhat crisp inside with the air conditioning on. How cold is too cold? 65 to 70 degrees F is probably a range the whole family is comfortable with. If it gets closer to 62 and a cat becomes too cold it will find a comfortable place in a sunny window or warmer part of the house. My Siamese found my air-conditioned bedroom a bit nippy this morning and headed for the attic to warm up. Cats are far from helpless. But what if there isnt a warm place?; Make a cozy kitty bed or a sleep sack available for your chilly feline.;
What Is Low Body Temperature
Hypothermia is a serious health condition that can become a life-threatening situation within minutes if the feline is unable to restore its core body temperature. Outdoor cats, stray cats, short haired and hairless cats are commonly affected by hypothermia during the winter months, but cats that undergo surgery are also at risk. Anesthesia slows the heart rate and flow of blood, resulting in a lower body temperature. Veterinary professionals use proactive methods during the use of anesthesia to prevent hypothermia, but prolonged surgeries can put a cat at risk. Low body temperature can also be an after-effect of cats in shock, cardiovascular disease and limb thromboembolism, so seeking a proper diagnosis from a veterinary professional is a must.;
A cats normal body temperature is between 37.7 and 39.2C or 100 to 102.5F. When a felines core temperature drops below the standard value, he or she is believed to have low body temperature. Low body temperature, or hypothermia, has initial signs of shivering as the body uses muscle contractions in an attempt to warm itself. If the feline cannot restore body temperature in time, the condition soon becomes severe, resulting in slow blood flow, a decreased heart rate and eventual death. Cats with short hair, or hairless cats, living in cold environments are the most susceptible to low body temperature.;
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Low Body Temperature Average Cost
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Freezing Temperature Is Too Cold
This misconception both is and isnt true. Freezing temperatures of 32°F or 0°C mean that there is an increased risk of frostbite and hypothermia, but your cat may be uncomfortable even at higher temperatures. It depends on the individual cat. Younger cats may be able to withstand colder temperatures than older cats or cats who are unwell or have arthritis. It will also depend on how much access to food the cat has. They will need more calories if theyre going to be outside in cold weather. It also depends on whether the cat has regular outdoor access, or is an indoor only cat. Cats who go outside are probably more familiar with the area and will know where the best shelter is. Indoor only cats wont have any such knowledge and can be more likely to panic if they find themselves outside.
Introduce A Shelter For Outdoor Cats
Cats tend to explore at night. Once their owner goes to bed, outdoor cats without a cat flap cant get into their warm home until morning. Temperatures are at their lowest in the middle of the night so make sure there is a warm shelter available at all times. If your cat prefers the indoors, make sure they are home and safe before you go to bed.
An outdoor sheltered area such as a shed or an elevated box filled with blankets should keep your pet dry and warm.
If your cat normally comes back home at night and they have been missing or outside for an extended period of time in extreme weather, when they return in the morning take them to the vet for a health check.
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Cats Adaptability To Temperatures Depends On:
Breed: Long-haired cats tolerate better cool temperatures than short-haired cats. For example, the Siberian cat is much more prepared for cold temperatures than a Burmese due to its thick fur that warms up its body. Cats such as Siberian, Maine Coon or Norwegian Forest Cats even have their paws covered by hair designed to walk in the snow or cold forest. Cats with thick coats may feel more uncomfortable with higher temperatures than short-haired cats.
Age: Kittens need higher temperatures than adult cats. A kitten could even suffer hypothermia in normal environmental temperatures due to the lack of capacity to retain body heat. Also, old cats need more warm temperatures than young adult cats as they usually suffer bone or joint pain.
Size: The smaller your cat, the less capacity to retain body heat. Also, if your cat is slim with low body fat you need to provide more sources of heat for it to feel comfortable and safe. On the other hand, if your cat is overweight itll probably be able to handle cool temperatures a little better.
Health: Cats with thyroid problems could be more prone to avoid too much heat. If a cat is suffering an infection or another type of sickness you need to provide your pet a warmer environment than usual, with a heated pet bed or heated blanket.;
Can My Cat Still Get Fleas In Winter
Spring and summer are perceived as the worst time of year for flea infestations, but be warned – fleas thrive in the winter too.
Central heating provides a perfect all-weather breeding ground for these biting insects. To combat the problem, you need to use flea products all year round. Vet-Medic have said;that because people are more relaxed as regards to flea treatments at this time of year, the chance of getting a serious infestation is quite high.
It seems most pet owners tend to only react to the visible signs and limit treatment to just their pets, which unfortunately means they are usually too late to prevent an invasion. Remember, an effective treatment programme involves treating your home, not just your pet.
It is also important to worm your cat if you discover he has fleas as some forms of tapeworm use fleas as intermediary hosts, which in turn are ingested by the animal when grooming so leading to infection by yet another unwanted parasite!
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Precautions To Take When Your Loves The Outdoors
One thing you might consider is building an outdoor shelter for your cat. If you place the shelter in an area where the cat usually hangs out, it will seek warmth from your shelter first. This can be a small wood shelter complete with comfortable bedding, enough space to move around, and a wide enough entrance.
Of course, the most obvious way to keep your cats safe and warm is to keep them inside throughout the entire winter. You may think that the garage counts as an indoor option. In reality, the garage can be just as cold as the outdoors, unless you have it heated.
Make sure that you discuss all of these options with your family and get them on board. If you come to a decision to keep the cat indoors all Winter, it does you no good if your spouse or children keep letting it out. Above all, keeping your pet safe is a family affair, and everyone needs to participate.
Is The Winter Weather Making My Cat Unhappy
Here’s how to keep your cat happy this winter.
- If you’re having guests over or are planning a party, make sure your cat has a quiet den to retreat to away from the crowd and somewhere dark that he can hide.;
- Throw away items such as string used when cooking the turkey, and tidy up tinsel, decorative wrapping ribbons and elastic bands because if eaten these could cause problems in your cat’s intestines.;
- There’s no harm in giving your pet a taste of turkey or salmon, but don’t overdo it. Vets often see poorly pets at this time of year that have been unable to cope with food they’re unused to or have overeaten.;
- Poinsettias, amaryllis, mistletoe berries, holly berries and lilies are poisonous for cats. If you have them in the house, then keep them well out of your pet’s way – read more about plants that are toxic to cats.;
- If your pet is on medication, ensure you have enough to get you through the festive season; the same goes for prescription food. Make a note of the local vet surgery who deal with out of hours/bank holiday emergencies for your usual practice, just in case.
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Controlling The Ambient Temperature
Ambient temperature is key to keeping a cat comfortable. Cats cannot remove their fur the way that we take off layers of clothing. Youll need to ensure the air around your cat is not too hot and stuffy.
Longhaired cats, especially Siberians, Norwegian Forest Cats, Persians, Ragdolls, and Maine Coons, flourish in cooler temperatures. Their long, thick coats keep them warm. While these breeds shed in the summer, theyll still be naturally warmer than their shorthaired counterparts.
Shorthaired cats find it more challenging to stay warm in cooler climates. This means they will enjoy a warmer ambient temperature. These cats will also spend more time basking in the sun during the summer. They are at equal risk of overheating, though.
An ambient indoor temperature between 75 78 degrees Fahrenheit will be a safe temperature for a cat. Longhaired breeds will prefer the lower end of the spectrum. Older or shorthaired cats will tolerate slightly warmer air.
Do not rely on the thermostat to keep a cat safe, though. Youll also need to keep a close eye. Watch your cat and ensure that it is not overheating. If your cat is too warm, it will start to behave erratically.
Myth #: How Cold Is Too Cold For Cats Freezing
Photo Credit: Christa Gampp via Flickr
The Myth: I am perfectly comfortable when it is 50°F outside, therefore my cat is comfortable at that temperature too.
The Truth: There isnt really a set temperature at which the weather becomes too cold for all cats. Generally speaking, when the temperature hits freezing the risk for severe hypothermia and frostbite are high. However, there are a variety of factors that determine;which temperatures are comfortable for a cat and which are too cold. These factors include:
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How Can I Warm Up My Cat
How can I warm up my cat? If your cat has been out in cold weather but does not seem to be suffering from any of the symptoms associated with hypothermia, just has cooler extremities, then warming them up should be easy. ;
A session of indoor play and some food should be enough to get the circulation going, burn some fuel and get warmed up relatively quickly. Like us, a cat will appreciate a warm position in the house if they have just come in from the cold.;
What Is Your Cat’s Normal Body Temperature
Your cat’s normal body temperature will typically be between 100.5 to 102.5°F.1;This means your cat can tolerate hotter temperatures than you can since a person’s average body temperature is about 98.6°F. Even though your cat can tolerate warmer temperatures, you should still be very cautious about how high you let the temperature get in your cat’s environment.
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How Much Cold Can A Cat Tolerate
Determining what temperature is too cold for cats depends on the age, breed, fur, health, and body mass. An average daily temperature of 45 degrees Fahrenheit is too cold for cats. If cats remain in a place with a temperature below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, they may suffer from hypothermia and possibly frostbite.
Causes Of Low Body Temperature In Cats
The cause of low body temperature in cats is quite similar to the cause of hypothermia in humans. If your cat has become wet and is the temperature is cold, the felines temperature could easily drop. Cats that are left outside in the rain or snow without shelter can easily develop environment associated hypothermia. Cats with short hair or no hair are most susceptible to this type of hypothermia, as well as infants and elderly cats.;
Cats which undergo lengthy surgeries that require heavy sedation are prone to anesthesia-related hypothermia. Anesthesia slows the heart rate, slows the breath, and blocks all nerve receptors, preventing the cat from moving or feeling. As anesthesia slows bodily functions, it also lowers the bodys core temperature and the cat could develop hypothermia if not properly monitored.;
Cats that ingest ivermectin , paracetamol , rat poisoning, or other toxic substances can experience blood loss and low heart rate, resulting in a low body temperature.;
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Provide A Heated Bedding
Try using a heated cat bed during the cold seasons. Another option is to look for comfortable padding, warm fabric, or even a fluffy blanket. Fleeces and faux furs are also good for keeping cats warm.;
Aside from that, consider how your cat likes to sleep. If it prefers to stretch out, it might need a spacious bed. If your pet loves to curl up, then consider getting a round bed.;
What Is The Coldest Temperature For Your Feral Kitten
Feral cats are the one that has no interaction with any human. They are fiercely independent and do not come closer to any human being. Feral cats do not allow themselves to handle, touch or interact with them. These cats specie remains hidden from humans. Sometimes you might wonder what temperature is too cold for feral cats to survive?
A simple and short answer to this is, when it is cold for you, it is cold for feral cats too. Anything below 32 degrees Fahrenheit is cold for a feral cat. Always strive to provide a shelter and a warm place to any feral cat you see outside in the winters.
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Myth #: The Garage Is Fine In Cold Weather
Photo Credit: Clara S. via Flickr
The Myth: My cat will be fine if I leave him/her in the garage overnight when it is cold outside.
The Truth: Your garage may hold some hidden dangers for your cat. Antifreeze being stored in the garage or leaking from a car is toxic to a cat if ingested. Unfortunately, antifreeze is an attractive treat to many animals and even if they dont drink it directly, they may lick it off of their paws or fur as a part of grooming. Also, chemicals used to melt ice can be toxic to cats. These may be stored in your garage or tracked in by people or cars.
Be sure to give your cars engine a few good knocks before starting it in the morning. If a cat gets cold overnight, he/she may seek shelter in the cars engine or wheel coverings. It can be pretty warm in those areas!