Keep Your Cat Cool This Summer

Cats are more adapted to hot weather than humans, especially outdoor cats.

But what can we do to make sure our cool cats stay hydrated?

Breeds matter!

Most cat breeds are fairly well suited to warmer weather as their ancestors were desert-dwelling animals, but it’s still good to know if your cat’s breed means you should keep a particularly close eye on them.

 

In general, cats with long hair or snub noses, such as Persian cats, tend to struggle more in the heat and may even have problems breathing – so you may want to keep them inside during any hot spells.

 

If your cat has white fur, try keeping them inside between 10am and 3pm, as the sun is hottest during these times and prolonged exposure can cause sunburn or even skin cancer. You could also try using a pet-specific sun cream – speak to your vet about suitable options.

Tips For Cool Cats

Although cats are often more sensible than dogs, there are still a few precautions you should take to make sure they’re staying safe in the sun.

 

Lots of cats enjoy stretching out and soaking up the sunshine, but always make sure there’s a cool shady spot for them to relax in too. You could try planting shrubs, using big plant pots or turning a cardboard box into a DIY cat shelter.

 

Make sure your cat doesn’t accidentally get shut in the shed, greenhouse or conservatory during the day or when you close them up at night – these can heat up very quickly and spell trouble for trapped kitties.

Keeping your cat cool inside your home is important too.

Leave doors and windows open or place fans around the house to keep the air circulating.

 

You can also invest in a cool mat or try freezing a bottle of water, wrapping it in a towel or pillowcase and placing it somewhere your cat likes to spend time. 

 

Cool kitties will also love small, frozen patties made from their favourite wet food, and you can sprinkle catnip on top as an extra treat to get them interested.

Keep Your Kitty Hydrated

Dehydration is a real problem for cats in hot weather, and it doesn’t help when they can be fussy about drinking. If you’re worried that your cat isn’t drinking enough, give the following tips a try:

  • Avoid plastic bowls – in the heat, these can taint the taste of the water. Offer your cat water in a glass, ceramic or metal bowl instead.
  • Make sure the water bowl is large, with a big surface area, so your cat will find it easy to lap up their water.
  • Keep the water topped up so your cat doesn’t have to put their head into the bowl.
  • Leave space between water and food bowls – some cats don’t like to drink in the same place that they eat.
  • Try placing water bowls in different places around the house, so that they can always find somewhere to drink.
  • If your cat prefers running water, a cat fountain might be a good option
  • If your cat eats tinned food, you could try mixing in small amounts of water to increase fluid intake.

If you think your cat might be suffering from dehydration, try the following tests, and always call the vet if you’re worried.

  • Take a look at your cat’s gums – if they’re sticky or tacky, this may be the first sign of dehydration.
  • Test skin elasticity – as you gently pull on your cat’s skin, it should snap back into place immediately.
  • Check their eyes – sunken eyes that appear dry can be a warning sign
  • Feel your cat’s paws – if they’re cold to the touch, this could be a sign of dehydration.

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