How to Help Your Cat Beat the Heat

Summers in Georgia can be very hot, both for us and for our feline friends. Heat can be very dangerous for cats, as they can only cool themselves off through their paw pads and, to a lesser extent, by panting. Below, a Marietta, GA veterinarian offers tips for helping Fluffy stay cool.

Water

Make sure your furry friend always has plenty of clean, fresh water. If Fluffy is often home alone, consider getting an automated dispenser, so her dish never goes dry. On really hot days, drop an ice cube or two into her water to keep it cool. Your kitty may also enjoy batting an ice cube around on the floor. Since your furball’s paw pads help regulate her temperature, this will also help her cool off.

Bedding

To keep Kitty’s bed comfy, position a fan to circulate the air above it. A raised bed will also help Fluffy stay cool, as these allow airflow beneath them. You can make your kitty a little hammock bed easily by attaching an old tee shirt or towel to an end table with four legs. Use Velcro strips to attach the material to the table legs. Voila!

Brushing

Kitties are generally very good at keeping themselves clean, but that doesn’t mean your furball can’t use a little help now and then. Since dead fur will decrease the insulating properties of that pretty coat, helping your kitty get rid of it will help her stay cool.

General

As you may have noticed, our feline friends are masters at making themselves comfortable. Make sure Fluffy has free access to rooms that are cooled by fans or air conditioners, and let her go where she wants. Don’t be surprised if you find her sprawled out on bathroom floor tiles, as these tend to stay fairly cool. If your kitty often follows you around, be careful you don’t accidentally lock her into a hot room!

Safety

Learn to recognize the signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Early symptoms include panting, restlessness, sweaty paws, and excessive grooming. With more severe cases, you may see vomiting, lethargy, staggering, stumbling, and/or an elevated pulse. If your cat displays these symptoms, immediately cool her off with cool water, and bring her to us immediately.

Does your cat need shots or an examination? Contact us, your Marietta, GA veterinary clinic, any time!