Cat and heat often go hand in hand, but in the summer, when it’s very hot, your cat can suffer from heat stroke. How can you protect it from the heat? In this article, I give you all the advice that will allow your cat to spend a refreshing summer.
How to refresh a cat: All the solutions
During the winter it’s common to see a cat resting in direct sunlight, or even sleeping on a radiator or in front of a stove in the winter, but that doesn’t mean cats don’t feel uncomfortable when the heat is excessive.
Indeed, high temperatures can pose a real threat to cats who, to regulate their body temperature, take advantage of the evaporation of the saliva they deposit on their hair during grooming sessions, sweat through the pads and can even panting. However, if it is very hot, they are at risk of heatstroke and it is essential to protect them.
1. Fresh water available
Leave fresh, clean water available 24 hours a day. Regularly check that your cat has water in its bowl and that it is not getting direct sunlight. A trick to keep the water cool is to put an ice cube in the water from time to time, but don’t force it too much because some cats don’t want to drink if the water is very cold.
If your cat has access to the outside, make sure he can go inside to drink from his bowl at any time by placing a bowl in a shady corner.
2. Protect your cat from the sun
It is very important for the cat to have a cool place protected from the sun to rest, especially during the hottest hours of the day. This applies to both those with cats that live indoors and cats that have access to the outdoors.
A cat locked up on a patio with no shaded areas to hide in and no water available could suffer heatstroke, just as if it had been locked in a car. So make sure he has access to a cooler area, like the bathroom or the garage.
3. Keep your home cool
The measures you use to create a cool environment for yourself will also work well for your cat. You can lower the blinds to protect yourself from the sun and use the air conditioner or a fan to lower the temperature of the room. In the latter case, make sure that the air does not hit the cat directly and that he has the possibility to move away if he wishes.
4. Rest it in the hottest hours
In hot weather, cats become less active and do well. To protect them from excessive heat, one of the recommendations is to ensure that the cat does not exercise on the hottest days. During the hottest hours of the day, avoid intense play sessions or the cat going outside.
5. Create cool places for your cat
Many cats like the cooler places in the house to rest in the summer, such as the bathtub or the sink. In addition to letting them take refuge in these places, you can prepare other cool spaces yourself for the cat to spend the hottest hours of the day there.
For example, putting a hot water bottle filled with cool water (and even ice cubes) under your bed is one option. Another possibility is to buy a bed that promotes the dispersion of heat, such as beds raised off the ground or those made of a breathable material.
6. Maintain good brushing
It is normal for cats to shed more in the warmer months than in the winter. Frequent brushing can aid the cat in this process and prevent knots and tangles from forming. On the other hand, do not moisten it, cats hate contact with water, even in summer.
7. Trim your cat’s hair
If the cat has long hair, trimming it especially on the neck, armpits and belly can be another measure to help control its temperature, but if the cat is frightened by the noise of the razor it is better to resort to d other measures to protect it from intense heat. Moreover, it is not a question of cutting the hair of the cat very short, but it is necessary to leave about 2-3 centimeters in length, because the hair partly protects against heat and sunburn.
8. Travel safe and cool
If you are traveling with your cat, pay attention to the temperature and ventilation of the car. It’s best to travel during the cooler hours of the day, stopping occasionally to give him a drink and check on him.
And of course, never leave it locked in the parked car, even if you leave the car in the shade. Within minutes, he could suffer heatstroke. This risk also exists when the cat is left locked in a transport cage or in a room without good ventilation.
9. Cool your cat with wet towels
In very hot weather, you can wet the cat with a damp towel from head to back. Water, as it evaporates, will cause an effect similar to our sweat and although most cats don’t like water, they will generally tolerate contact with a damp towel.
If you can, give him a cooling mat that will fix the problem once and for all and that he can still use in the summer when it’s really hot.
10. Beware of heat stroke
If the cat’s temperature rises too much, you can tell by a series of signs: the cat may become nervous, start to pant, salivate excessively, feel hot to the touch, shiver , stagger, vomit and its gums may appear discolored . darker and more intense than normal. In severe cases, the cat may faint and even die.
The cats most at risk for heatstroke are flat-faced cats, older cats, obese cats, and those with heart disease or respiratory problems. However, any cat can suffer from it at one time or another, so if the weather is hot and you are concerned about your cat’s health, contact your veterinarian promptly.
11. Favor wet food
Dry food will likely be rejected by your cat as it will further dry out his body. Instead, try wet food so he can hydrate while eating. Cold food is best for hot periods.
12. Don’t let him out between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
If you have an outdoor cat that roams very far, leave it inside during the hottest hours to avoid any risk that it no longer has enough energy to go inside to drink. Generally, when it’s hot, cats find a cooler corner because they can’t stand high heat. Between 1 a.m. and 1 p.m. in summer, the temperature can be dangerous for cats, especially very young ones and cats 12 years of age or older.
13. Put a cool water bottle where he sleeps
This solution will help him cool off while he sleeps and he probably won’t move from it to enjoy the coolness of that bottle of water. An icy bottle is welcome, as its effects will be longer. Obviously, a cooling mat will be much more effective. You can put a cooling pad instead of the bottle to keep it even cooler.
What you should not do
There are several things not to do when you want your cat to be cooler, here are all the things not to do:
Sprinkle it with water
Cats hate water, even in hot weather, so spare him the torment, you’ll only annoy him and he’ll shake himself to get the water out.
Hair is important to cats, especially when it comes to temperature regulation, so leave the coat on and only cut part of it if it’s a long-haired cat.
Lock him in a cold room
Cats can’t stand confinement, so if a room is colder, leave the door ajar so they can get in and out easily. The smaller the room, the less they will support it. For example, you can give him access to the bathroom, which is generally colder.
How to cool a cat in the summer: The final word on the cat and the heat
Cat and warmth do not always go hand in hand. If it is very hot, use all of these tips to cool your cat, ideally use as many of them as possible to keep your cat as cool as possible at all times.