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May 2024

7 Tips to Keep Your Cat Cosy in Winter

CareGeneral Advice

How to Keep a Cat Warm in Winter

It’s always important to keep your cat comfortable – but there’s even more to consider in the winter months. Cats can get cold, so make sure your home is well insulated, and set your cat up in a draft-free area.

1. Create a Cosy Space

Whether your cat is a homebody or an explorer, they’ll need a cosy space indoors for wet-weather days. Make sure you’ve set up an area for your cat to retreat to for quiet time. Cats can get cold, so make sure your home is well insulated, and make sure you put their bed in a draft-free area.
Here are some winter essentials for your cat’s little nook.

Cat Blanket

Provide soft, warm blankets in your cat’s favourite spots around the house for extra warmth and comfort. Shop blankets here.

Cat Heated Blanket

A heated blanket can provide continuous warmth for your cat. While some cats won’t need the additional heat, it can be beneficial for hairless cats, older cats, or for cats with arthritis. Find thermal blankets here.

Winter Cat Bed

When it comes to your cat’s bed, it’s important to consider its placement in the colder months. Provide a warm, comfortable spot near the heater.

Offer a perch in sunny windowsills, and if your cat is older or has arthritis consider investing in a winter cat bed. Opt for a bed with thick padding, raised edges, or even an enclosed igloo-style bed to help retain heat.

Igloo Cat Bed

Igloo cat beds, also known as cave or enclosed cat beds, offer several benefits that make them a popular choice for cat owners, especially during the cooler seasons. Here are some of the key advantages:

  1. Warmth and Insulation: Igloo beds provide excellent warmth and insulation. The enclosed design helps to retain your cat's body heat, keeping them warm and cozy even in colder environments.
  2. Sense of Security: Many cats naturally seek out small, enclosed spaces when they feel anxious or threatened. An igloo bed can offer a safe retreat where your cat can feel secure and protected from the outside world.
  3. Privacy: Cats that are shy or prefer solitude will appreciate the privacy that an igloo bed offers. It gives them a private space to relax away from household noise and activity.
  4. Comfort: Igloo beds are often lined with soft materials like fleece or plush fabric, providing a comfortable and soft surface for cats to rest and sleep.
  5. Reduction in Stress: By providing a secure and private space, igloo beds can help reduce stress and anxiety in cats, particularly in busy households or environments with multiple pets.
  6. Protection from Drafts: The enclosed design shields cats from cold drafts, making them ideal for placement in cooler areas of the house or near doorways.

Cat Jackets for Winter

While not all cats will tolerate clothing, a cat jacket can be helpful for short trips outside or for extra warmth for hairless breeds or senior cats. Try our dog jackets and jumpers in an XS size. Browse them here.

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2. Entertain Your Cat Indoors

It’s important to consider your cat’s enrichment in the wet-weather months – particularly if they’re restricted indoors. Cats need to keep their mind’s active, so it’s a good idea to engage them in play if they’re not roaming.

Cat Enrichment Toys

Interactive toys for cats are designed to engage your cat's natural instincts and provide physical and mental stimulation. These toys often mimic prey behaviour, encouraging cats to pounce, chase, and swipe.

Here are some common types of interactive cat toys:

  1. Feather Wands: These consist of a stick with feathers or a similar enticing item attached via a string. When you wiggle the wand, it mimics the movement of birds and stimulates the cat’s hunting instincts.

  2. Treat Dispensers: These toys release small amounts of food as the cat plays with them, providing both mental stimulation and a reward. This can be a good way to slow down fast eaters and make mealtime more engaging.

  3. Puzzle Toys: Designed to challenge a cat’s intelligence, these toys require the cat to solve a puzzle to receive a treat or another form of reward. They can help sharpen a cat’s problem-solving skills and reduce boredom.

  4. Motorized and Battery-Operated Toys: These toys move or vibrate on their own, stimulating the cat's prey drive. They often feature unpredictable movements that keep cats engaged and on their toes.

Interactive toys not only help keep cats entertained but also help maintain their physical well-being and reduce behaviour problems by providing an outlet for their energy. This is especially important in winter when wet-weather may prevent roaming, or for indoor-only cats.

Cat Enrichment Activities

You can also engage in enrichment activities to mentally stimulate your cat. Here are some ideas.

  1. Cat Furniture: Cat trees, shelves, and window perches encourage climbing and provide safe spaces where cats can observe their environment from a high vantage point, satisfying their instinct to survey their territory.

  2. Training Sessions: Cats can learn a variety of tricks and commands, which is a great way to engage their minds. Use positive reinforcement such as treats or praise to encourage them.

  3. DIY Toys: Simple homemade toys, like a box with holes for treats, can be a great way to engage your cat. Even a crumpled piece of paper or a cardboard box can become an exciting toy.

  4. Social Interaction: Regular playtime is important to mentally stimulate your cat and develop their social skills.

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3. Create a Safe Space for Outdoor Enrichment

It’s a good idea to provide your cat a safe space outdoors where they can watch the world go by, without disrupting native wildlife. It’s also beneficial for winter, as you can supervise your cat while their outside – without worrying about them getting caught in storms while roaming.

Cat Houses Outdoors

Provide a sturdy, insulated cat house to keep your cat warm when outside. If space and safety permit, a cat enclosure (catio) allows indoor cats to experience the outdoors safely. They can watch birds, sniff plants, and enjoy the fresh air.

Cat Play Area Outdoors

Set up a protected play area with structures for climbing and scratching that are sheltered from the elements.

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4. Consider Grooming Your Cat

Your cat’s grooming needs can change in winter. Here are some points to consider:

  1. Dry Skin: Cats might develop drier skin in the winter due to lower humidity levels indoors where the heating system is running. You may notice more dander or flaky skin.

  2. Static Electricity: Increased static electricity from dry air can make grooming uncomfortable for your cat. You can help by using a humidifier or gently wiping your cat with a damp cloth.

  3. Matting: Longer-haired cats are more prone to matting in the winter, especially if they get caught in the rain. Regular brushing helps prevent mats from forming.

  4. Outdoor Debris: If your cat goes outside, they might pick up more debris in their fur like mud or leaves from roads and pavements. Cleaning their paws and undercoat after outings is helpful.

  5. Less Shedding: Cats typically shed less in the winter as they retain more fur for warmth, which might slightly reduce the need for frequent grooming compared to warmer months.

Overall, brushing your cat is important in winter to manage these issues and keep your cat comfortable.

Cat Grooming Brush

Use a brush to remove loose fur, which helps to prevent hairballs and maintains the coat’s insulation qualities. Brushing not only helps distribute natural oils throughout the coat, keeping the skin healthy and the fur sleek, but also stimulates blood circulation, which is beneficial in colder weather.

For long-haired breeds, more frequent grooming is essential to prevent tangles and mats that can cause discomfort or even skin irritation.

5. Consider Your Cat’s Diet

In winter, your cat may need more calories, especially if they spend time outdoors in the cold. It may be a good idea to adjust your cat’s diet to tailor it to the winter months.

Cat Wet Food

Wet food can be a better option for the colder months. This is because it’s easier to digest, which is beneficial for blood flow. It also contains moisture, which is good for keeping them hydrated – counteracting dehydration that can occur from increased exposure to indoor heating.

6. Consider Senior Cat Needs

Senior Cat Supplements

Supplements can support joint health and overall wellness in older cats, making the winter months more comfortable. This is particularly beneficial for cats with arthritis.

7. Monitor Your Cat for Signs of Cold

How to Know if Your Cat is Cold?

Watch for signs like shivering, seeking heat, or curling up tightly, which can indicate your cat is trying to stay warm. If you notice any of these signs, consider offering warmer bedding or setting your cat up in a warmer part of the house.

FAQs for Cat Care in Winter

How to Keep My Cat Warm in a Cold Room?

Provide an insulated bed, warm blankets, and ensure the room where you cat rests is free from drafts.

How Much Wet and Dry Food to Feed My Cat?

Adjust food quantity based on your cat’s activity level, which may decrease in winter. Consult your vet for specific recommendations.

Do Cats Need Clothing in Winter?

Some cats might benefit from clothing, especially if they are hairless or elderly, but most cats typically do not need extra clothing indoors.

How to Build an Outdoor Cat Shelter for Winter?

An outdoor shelter is a good idea for your cat’s enrichment. Try a catio, which are easy to set up in your backyard.

How to Entertain a Cat?

Keep your cat active and entertained indoors with interactive toys, puzzles, and regular playtime sessions.

Keeping it cosy!

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