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How to prepare a cat for winter

author Lucy Byrne | Care and raising

Days are getting colder and it is time again to prepare our furry friends who live outdoors for winter. All cats (whether they live outdoors or only go outside occasionally) need our greater attention in this season.

If your furry friend lives indoors and only sits near an open window from time to time at maximum, you don’t need to change anything in taking care of it during winter months.. But if it can walk outside or spends a part of a day outside, we need to think about a few rules which will help it to survive cold season unmolested.

The first thing is that we need to provide our cats that spend time outside in winter greater intake of quality food. That’s because they need to create a sufficient layer of subcutaneous fat and quality thick fur the growth of which we can also support by using salmon oil. Did you know that it’s said you can say how harsh winter is going to be according to how much a cat eats before winter? And it holds true even for strictly house cats.

Moreover, winters are also difficult for cats’ immunity as well as for ours. Especially in recent years, when we have to face large temperature differences. It is therefore not a bad idea to give your cat food suplements to support their immunity starting from autumn.

If you have a cat which lives outdoors, e.g. in the garden of your house, also pay attention to the place where you put its food, it should be as little exposed to wind, rain and snow as possible. The bowl also shouldn’t be directly on the ground, but for example on polystyrene. We also have to pay greater attention to your cats’ water bowls. Of course, the water will freeze in winter, so we should change it more often, several times a day in a perfect case.

All of this can be solved by putting bowls somewhere indoors, to a barn, to a basement or to a boiler room. Every outdoor cat should at least have an unlimited access to a dry and relatively warm place. Some place where it can hide if the weather is bad.

It is a sure thing that every cat can handle winter differently. Norwegian Forest cats or Siberian cats really enjoy winter and don’t need any particular care, while you can’t force a Sphynx cat even to poke its nose outdoors. And if you would succeed by chance, it wouldn’t probably survive even a short walk unharmed.

However, even the most resistant cats can sometimes have a hard time during winter, so it is advisable to check its condition regularly, e.g. during feeding. Notice the little changes in its physical condition as well as in its behaviour. If you find something to be strange, visit a vet with your furry friend or at least take your cat indoors for a couple of days.

Does your cat go outside in winter? And does it run outside even if it’s freezing cold and there is snow, or would it rather skip a walk in such cold weather?