Help Keep Your Cat Stay Cool On Hot Days
The hot days of summer are welcomed after a long cold winter, but there are those super hot days that make even the coldest of winter seem not so bad. Annie, Eddie and Mercy are indoor only cats and by far their favorite place to be is in the sun room. This room was designed by Paul and built for Gracey to enjoy the outdoors from the safety of the indoors. The row of windows along the bottom of the room are just the right height for the cats to sit and watch the activity in the backyard. We enjoy the room too, but we must admit, the sun room has been claimed by the cats. The sun room is also the hottest room in the house. We help our cats stay cool on these hottest of days.
Can Cats Handle Summer Heat?
We humans sweat to cool ourselves butt our cat’s bodies aren’t as efficient. Cats pant to cool themselves and sweat minimally through their paw pads. Summertime heat can cause heat exhaustion that can rapidly advance into heatstroke.
we take special care to Help our cats stay cool
- Water Make sure your cats have plenty of fresh water. We have a water fountain for the cats but we also place bowls of fresh cold water in the sun room for easy access. Annie runs to the kitchen every time she hears ice clinking into a glass, so that is a great reminder to place a few cubes into the cat’s water dishes to keep their water cool. Make sure you wash the water bowls out frequently to keep the water appealing and if your cats are like ours, and like to dip their paw into the water you will see why it is important to keep the water bowls clean.
- Control the Climate You know that stuffy feeling of a closed up house? If you are uncomfortable, your cat is too. If you have air conditioning, you can set the indoor temperature to a comfortable setting. We keep our temperature at a higher setting during the day because the doors to the sun room are open for the cats. On super hot days, we only open one of the doors enough for the cats to come and go as they please and secure the door with a door stopper. This keeps the air conditioner from running continuously and offers a cool retreat for the cats taking a break from the sun room.
- Circulate the Air We set a tall oscillating fan in the sun room to keep air circulating. Make sure the fan you choose has a protective grid to keep curious paws from reaching inside.
- Windows Make sure your screens are secure. Examine your screens for any opening or weak areas that your cat could slip through. We only open the bigger windows in the sun room enough to allow a breeze because Annie is a bit wild. She gets super excited watching the birds and we are afraid she would push right through the screens in her excitement.
- Insect Check The summer brings other visitors to the sunroom in the form of ants, flies, ladybugs, spiders and sometimes wasps. Make sure to keep your cat’s area free from unwanted insects by keeping it extra clean during the hot humid months. We do a thorough cleaning of the sun room in the Spring including washing out the window sills with white vinegar and water. This deters the insects from entering and is safe for you and your cats. In the case of wasps, close your cat in another area until you have safely removed the stinging insect from your home.
- Cool Surfaces for Napping You might notice that your cat has decided to nap on the floor or near a vent during the hottest hours of the day. We are a carpet free home, due to our own allergies, so the cats have wood and tile floors to choose from for napping. We often find the cats napping on the tile floor underneath the furniture where there is shade during the hottest part of the day. If you don’t have an area of your home without carpeting, you might try a cotton pillowcase on the floor or create a cool spot for your cat by placing frozen gel packs inside a towel or pillowcase and place the cool pack into your cat’s favorite bed.
- The cats like the Catit Design Senses Comfort Zone Elevated Bed. * This bed gives them an elevated platform and the green cushion can be chilled to provide added comfort for your cats on those super hot days. Don’t worry, it wasn’t long before Eddie took his turn chilling on the green mat too.
- Brush Your Cats One easy way to help your cats stay cooler is to help them by brushing away their excess hair. We brush the cats more often in the summer to remove their loose hair. They don’t seem to mind the extra brushing as it must make them feel so much better.
- Sun Protection Annie has white ears and tips that are vulnerable to getting sunburned. She naturally seems to come inside during the hottest hours of the day and then returns to the sun room in the late afternoon when the room is shaded. We still keep an eye on her to keep those cute little ears from getting burned.
HOw Do I know my cat is Too Hot?
Look for sigs your cat is overheated. If you see your cat breathing rapidly, panting, restless or their paws are sweaty, this could be a sign that your cat is overheated. Call your veterinarian immediately and give your cat cold water and a cool spot to rest.
One More Safety Tip
I always have at least a half tank of gas in my vehicle. This provides me a level of comfort that if an emergency does arise with us or our cats, we have enough fuel to make it to the emergency room. It is a terrible feeling to waste time stopping for fuel when a loved one is ill.