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23rd Jun 2023

How to keep cats cool in summer

by Burns Team Writer

The arrival of summer can be challenging for cats. Whilst we can simply put on our shorts and sunhats, our feline friends are stuck wearing their fur coats. Whilst they might not be able to shed their furry attire, there are several ways you can help your cat stay cool and comfortable throughout the summer months.

10 tips for keeping your cat cool

1. Create shaded areas

Just like us, exposure to prolonged sunlight can lead to overheating, dehydration, and even sunburn in cats. To protect your cat from the effects of sitting out in the sun, we suggest providing them with shady spots in the garden. Shrubs and trees are a great option if you have the space available. However, even a cardboard box can offer them some relief from the sun’s intensity.

2. Close your curtains

Allowing direct sunlight into your home can make it feel like someone has turned up the heating, leaving you and your cat with nowhere to cool down. By keeping curtains and blinds closed, you can effectively block out the harsh sunlight. This can provide your cat with a more comfortable environment during the hot weather. For indoor cats, this is vital to ensuring their overall safety and happiness.

3. Open your windows

The feeling of cool air can quickly bring down your cat’s body temperature. If you have an indoor cat, we understand that you might be worried about having open windows. However, there are protective measures you can take to prevent your cat escaping, whilst providing them with access to the outside world. During the hot days, having a few windows open will help maintain a comfortable indoor environment for your feline friend.

4. Put down cooling mats

Due to your cat’s fur, it can make it more difficult for them to regulate their body temperature. However, a cooling mat can provide them with a refreshing place to lie down, reducing the risk of overheating. If you don’t have a cooling mat, you can even try placing a damp towel on the floor, helping your cat to stay cool on the hottest of days. This is a simple yet effective way of keeping your cat safe in the summer.

5. Provide cool water

Making sure your cat has access to cold water is essential during the hot weather. Dehydration can lead to serious health issues in cats, so we recommend placing multiple water bowls throughout your home. Hopefully, this will encourage your feline friend to drink more regularly. You can even add ice cubes to the water bowl to make it more refreshing. Keeping your cat hydrated will help them stay happy and healthy.

6. Moisten dry food

Dry cat food is undeniably nutritious, but its low moisture content is not ideal during the summer months. Adding water to dry food is a simple solution to keeping your cat hydrated. The heat can also cause your cat to lose their appetite, but moistening their food can entice them to eat and ensure they receive those essential nutrients.

Our range of dry cat food is the perfect option for your feline friend. Made with the highest quality sources of protein and wholegrains, our dry food contains all of the minerals your cat needs. With the simple addition of water, you can create a delicious and nutritious porridge for your cat to enjoy.

7. Prepare ice cubes

Adding a few ice cubes to your cat’s water bowl can help them to stay hydrated. You can even try placing some ice cubes in a separate dish for your cat to play with. This will not only keep your cat entertained, but provide them with some relief from the heat at the same time. Just make sure that the ice cubes are small enough to avoid any choking hazards.

8. Remove excess fur

As the weather gets warmer, you will probably notice your cat grooming themselves more. This is to shed their winter coat, allowing them to stay cool in summer. However, long haired cats can need help when it comes to removing excess fur. By regularly brushing your cat, you can prevent any matting, infections or skin irritations from developing. Keeping their fur healthy and shiny will ensure your long haired cat is free from discomfort.

9. Apply sun cream

Whilst your cat’s fur acts as a natural barrier against the sun, there are still some areas of exposed skin. This is particularly true for light coloured cats, as their ears and nose can be more susceptible to burning. If you have an active cat who likes spending time outdoors, it is recommended that you apply a pet-safe sun cream. This can help to protect your cat from skin cancer, allowing them to safely enjoy the warm weather.

10. Avoid strenuous exercise

Playing is a great way to tire out your cat. However, vigorous play or strenuous exercise can quickly lead to overheating and dehydration. If you can, avoid playing with your cat during the day. Instead, encourage them to play in the morning or evening when the temperatures are milder. This should help to protect them from heat exhaustion.


How to tell if a cat is dangerously hot

Keeping a close eye on your cat during the summer is essential for their safety. As cats are more vulnerable to the effects of heat, you need to be able to identify the signs of discomfort, dehydration and distress. These signs include…

  • Breathing rapidly
  • Panting excessively
  • Lethargic behaviour
  • Darker gums
  • Vomiting

If you notice your cat exhibiting any of these symptoms, you need to act quickly to cool them down. This includes preparing shade, opening windows and offering fresh water. If your cat’s condition continues to worsen, you will need to contact your vet immediately.

Need further advice?

As the temperatures start to rise, it is our responsibility as cat owners to prioritise the wellbeing of our feline companions. For further advice on keeping cats cool, get in touch. Our team can answer any of your questions, especially if they are about the benefits of our nutritious cat food.

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