Keeping Your Pets Safe This Summer: Hot Weather Tips (Cats)
Cats can cope with summer conditions quite well. However, this does not mean that you should leave your cat in an overheated room or a closed car during summer. Just like humans, cats can suffer heatstroke and dehydration as well. A cat’s sweat glands are on the anus, around the lips, on the balls of its paws, and around the mammary ridge. Cats also expel heat through their ears.
Heatstroke and dehydration are serious conditions that can be fatal. When summer temperatures become extreme, you can take certain steps to keep your feline friend comfortable and safe in the heat. Some of the hot weather tips for cats include:
Keep Your Cat Hydrated
This is common sense; unfortunately, many cat owners forget to check their cat’s water bowl regularly during the summer season. You need to understand that your cat, just like you, cannot survive for long without water. Replacing or refilling the water in your cat’s water bowl, several times a day will encourage him/her to drink. You should also consider placing several water bowls around your garden and house to ensure that water is always within reach.
When it is particularly hot, cats tend to sleep more. Just like you, your cat prefers shady and quiet places to take a nap, such as cool stone tiles. It is also important to place your cat’s water bowl in such places. Avoid filling the bowl with milk since it goes off too quickly. Also, milk does not agree with some cats.
Ensure There Is Good Air Circulation
During the hot season, open a few windows to let in a breeze. This will provide a cool and comfortable environment for your cat to rest. You can also get a small box fan and place it near an open window or on the floor. Every time your cat feels too hot, it will appreciate the cool breeze flowing through its fur.
If you do not want to use your air conditioner during summer, put a frozen water bottle in front of the box fan. Also, when you elevate your cat’s sleeping bed, air will pass under the bed, which will help keep your cat cool.
You should also groom your cat often to untangle its coat, which will help keep him/her cool. This is especially important if your cat has long fur. Clipping your cat’s fur can also help reduce his/her suffering during the summer heat. You need to remember that light-colored cats with pale skin can suffer sunburn. Therefore, talk to your vet to determine whether giving your cat a clip is a wise move.
A great tip is to have only its tummy fur clipped. This will offer some cooling in addition to sun protection. You should also consider taking a damp paper towel or washcloth and stroking your cat with it. Your cat will not mind a tiny amount of moisture on their fur during the hot season. Cats groom themselves to stay cool, which is essentially wetting their fur with saliva.
There are many other ways to keep your cat cool and comfortable during the hot summer season. At The Little Cat Clinic, we believe that every cat deserves some TLC. Visit our offices in La Mesa, California. To schedule an appointment, call us on 619-547-0900.