WINTER CARE FOR INDOOR CATS
September 06, 2018 by Mehak Daleh
Most cats are warmth seeking animals, forever looking for a cosy spot to curl up in and nap. It is quite common to find your cat lounging in the sunniest spot in the house or balled up on a warm laptop, even. Your kitty’s happiness and the warmth it receives go hand in hand. This coming winter, use the following tips to ensure that your favourite feline companions are cosy and content.
1. Let There Be Sunlight:
Cats love their time in the sun. Very often, you can see them stretched out in a warm shaft of sunlight streaming through a window. They even change their position from window to window as the sun shifts its position. During winters, whenever the sun is out, it is advisable to draw open the curtains for your cat to enjoy the warmth. Also, move the furniture which gets in the way of your cat receiving enough sunlight. You could place a cat bed in the spot which gets the maximum sunlight in your house.
2. Changes in Diet:
Your pet requires more energy to stay warm during the winters, much like humans do. Therefore, do not be alarmed if your cat tends to eat more during the colder months. It needs a higher calorie intake to keep itself warm. Of course, it is important to check that they do not over eat excessively and fall prey to obesity.
3. Water Temperature:
How would you feel if someone served you a glass of chilled water in the middle of winter? Not so nice, right? Here is the news – your pet feels exactly the same! Cats tend to drink much less water during the cold months because the water in their bowls turns very cold and is not suitable for drinking. It is, therefore, vitally important to refill their water bowls every few hours with fresh water at room temperature.
4. No Draughts, Please:
Cats are attracted to movement. Most of the games they love playing involve rapid movement of objects. It is also common to see them stare out of the windows at birds, lizards, cars and whatever else might catch their fancy. Since they so love spending their time near windows, it should be ensured that the windows are closed and their edges sealed. Winter is synonymous with bitterly cold draughts of air leaking in through the windows. Your cat would appreciate it very much if you would keep the cold breeze out. You could also place a padded perch on the window sill to make it more comfortable. Heated window perches are also available and they ensure your cat is most cozy as it watches the goings on outside its favourite window.
While cats need a dry bed for a comfortable nap, they need a certain amount of moisture in the air to keep them healthy. Winter air is very dry. See how your skin needs more moisturizer and your lips more balm to remain in good condition? The same is true for your feline friends. The winter air makes their skin dry and causes them to itch. Their coats develop more static electricity which makes them uncomfortable. What do you do then? Moisturize them? No! The solution is to have a humidifier in the house to keep the air moist.
6. Lots of Play:
Bitter winters mean your full of life kitty will have to remain indoors most of the time. This could mean less physical activity. A reduction in physical activity affects the cat adversely – both physically and emotionally. To keep your cat happy and healthy in mind and body, it is imperative that you play with it. Set aside a dedicated play time with your pet. This will not only keep it active, it will certainly reduce your own stress levels and help you relax.
7. Say No to Garages and Basements:
Sometimes, cat parents like to keep their pets more or less confined to auxiliary spaces such as garages and basements, out of the main house. They may say it is because the cat litter smells or that their cat sheds its hair all over the place. Whatever maybe the reason, these places are not for your pet. They are usually very cold and sometimes even damp. Such an environment is not conducive to the cat’s health, especially in winters.
8. A Little Cat Luxury:
Pamper your cat, if possible. Allow your pet to indulge in some kitty luxury with heated beds. Many types and designs of heated beds are available and you must choose one according to your cat’s habits – whether it likes to be completely covered when it sleeps or only wants to be partially enclosed in the bed; whether it likes to have its back snuggled up against the bed or if it likes to sleep sprawled and spread out in a carefree manner. If you can afford it, this makes a great winter gift for you special kitty.
Happy Winter To You & Your Lovely Pet!