Tue, Apr 20, 2010 – by Janice Biniok

4 Cold Weather Tips for Indoor Cats

4 Cold Weather Tips for Indoor Cats 1

Your indoor cat may never experience the worst of winter weather, but the frosty outdoors still has an impact on the indoors. For instance, your cat’s body may go through some changes this time of year even without exposure to the North wind, including the production of a thicker coat of hair and the desire to sleep more often. Both of these changes may require an adjustment in your cat’s diet if her appearance so dictates: more protein to compensate for increased hair growth, and smaller meals to prevent too much weight gain.

Also, no matter how well-insulated your habitable home, ‘tis the season for drafts. So make sure your kitty’s beds and perches aren’t located where chilly air currents can make her sick. Older, arthritic cats may have even less tolerance for the cold air that inevitably seeps in, but they can benefit from a little extra TLW (Tender Loving Warmth) with a heated cat bed or a hot water bottle.

Unless your cat gets into a really messy situation, you might want to put off baths and hair clipping until a more temperate time of year. No one likes to be wet or scantily dressed during hypothermia season—even cats—regardless of how warm it is indoors. Regular grooming, however, can help preserve the insulating qualities of your cat’s coat. While mats do nothing to chase away the chill, fluffiness is great for holding in the heat.

And don’t forget about heating appliance hazards. Fireplaces should have screen barriers, and electric heaters should be kept where your cat can’t tip them over or get burned by them. Kitties are known to cozy up to anything that generates warmth, so offer your resident feline something completely safe: a snuggly lap. Then, you can both discover the greatest benefit of outdoor crispness—indoor closeness!

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