Cats are highly adaptable and must be given adequate care during hot weather. Indoor cats may be at risk of heat stroke or an inability to cool down body heat because of a lack of ventilation and air circulation. Other signs your cat might need help during hot weather include panting, drooling, lethargy, vomiting, and diarrhoea.
You do not want your cat exposed to the scorching heat of the summer months, so you should keep her indoors as much as possible. However, what is the ideal home temperature for cats in the summer?
This article discusses the safest and best temperature for cats!
In the summer, maintaining your house at a proper temperature and keeping your pet safe are crucial. Many cat owners tend to leave their pets outside in the summer for various reasons, but this is dangerous.
Cats are known to be very sensitive to heat. They are more likely to suffer heat exhaustion and heat stroke during hot weather. Indoor cats can suffer from dehydration, a common cause of death among indoor cats during hot weather. They can also develop other health issues like kidney disease or hyperthyroidism. On the other hand, outdoor cats can face dangers such as being hit by a car or fighting with other animals. The most important thing for cat owners is keeping their cats cool and safe this summer!
In the same way, as humans require the comfort of a warmer environment when they are sick, sick cats need the same. It might be a good idea to raise the temperature in your home if your cat isn’t doing well.
Summer is an uncomfortable time of year for cats with thick coats since they will most likely feel uncomfortable. Keeping in mind that they fluctuate just as much as your body temperature, you must take special consideration if you live in a location with a tropical climate. A cat that has adapted to the higher temperatures may also be a better alternative if you get a different breed of cat.
A younger cat needs more heat than one that is older. As a cat owner, keep a few blankets in the bedrooms so your cats can stay warm while sleeping. Lastly, knowing where they are in the summertime adds to your peace of mind.
The larger the cat is, the more heat it can retain and the more resilience it possesses. Therefore, obese cats do better in cooler climates than skinny cats since they do better in those conditions.
Cats that feel too hot will exhibit the following symptoms:
- Keep an eye out for panting. It is much more concerning when cats pant than dogs who do so regularly to cool off. Whenever you see your cat panting, it is a sign that it is dangerously hot and is attempting to cool itself.
- Pay attention to the way your cat walks. If your feline friend seems more unsteady than usual and is stumbling or wobbling when they walk, this could mean that the cat is in extreme heat.
- Take a look at their gums. They are overheating if their gums are red.
- It is essential to pay attention to the behaviour of your cat. They may be too hot if they are slower or more sluggish than they usually are.
- If your cat is vomiting or experiencing diarrhoea along with any of the above symptoms, seek immediate veterinary attention at your earliest convenience. In this case, the cat is overheating and is likely to suffer from heatstroke due to too much heat.
Heat stroke is a life-threatening condition that can occur when cats are exposed to too much heat, such as in an overheated home or car. It can also happen when they exercise strenuously without enough water and shade. The symptoms of heat stroke include rapid breathing, increased heart rate, heavy panting, vomiting, diarrhoea, drooling and seizures.
Cats are prone to heat stroke because they have a high body temperature compared to other mammals. The owners need to know how to recognise and prevent the condition.
Cats can cope with warmer temperatures more because their average body temperature is between 100.5 and 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit. On the other hand, people’s bodies have an average temperature of about 98.6°F.
Even though your cat can handle the heat, don’t shut off the air conditioning just because it gets hot outside. Keeping your cat indoors might not be enough to keep him calm when the temperature outside is high.
Veterinarians often recommend leaving the AC set at a moderate temperature (75-78°F) to keep your pet comfortable. Leaving the fan on without the AC is not enough to keep your pet comfortable. It is important to note that fans are not nearly as effective as air conditioners in cooling cats. Hence, you should ensure that the air conditioner is always on.
Pet parents must know that if they want to reduce or even eliminate the risk of their pets suffering from heat stroke, they can take plenty of methods. You can do so in a variety of ways, including:
- In summer, keep the air conditioning on. To improve air circulation, you should run fans in your home without air conditioning.
- Clean water should always be available to your cat at all times. To avoid heatstroke, it is crucial to keep your cat hydrated to ensure he does not suffer from dehydration.
- Your cat can retreat to several shady areas in your home if they need to escape. A cat bed can be placed in a closet if your house has a lot of windows, so open up one of those doors and place the cat bed there. When the weather gets warmer in the summer, your cat needs access to a shady area where it can escape the heat of the sun when it needs to do so.
- If it is a hot day, limit the time you spend playing. Your cat should not be excited by the presence of catnip, and you should keep the catnip hidden. It is not worth the risk to exercise on sweltering days since exercise increases your body’s temperature quickly.
Naturally, one of the most important things you should do is to ensure that your cat’s temperature remains comfortable throughout the year. The question remains whether cats are more at risk in the winter or the summer. When it comes to warming up a cat, the process is generally much more accessible than when it comes to cooling it down.
There is no doubt that maintaining your home’s temperature in the summer months is the most critical thing you can do for it. This is in contrast to maintaining it in the winter months. Your cat will have more opportunities to warm themselves up during the winter if they feel cold. This presumes that your cat will have access to an indoor space all winter. The cat can keep warm at home by cuddling up next to the furnace, napping on a sunny window sill, curling up under a blanket, or snuggling up to you.
However, it becomes more challenging to maintain a comfortable body temperature during the summer months. Unlike a human being, a cat cannot simply take off its coat to cool off if it gets overheated.
It should also be noted that overheating can pose a greater health risk than cold weather. Compared to hypothermia, heatstroke is a much more severe risk for cats. While humans have sweat glands that control the body’s temperature through sweat and help prevent overheating, these feline animals are limited in their ability to cool themselves down.
It is crucial to keep your cat from overheating this season. Keeping your cat’s environment well-regulated is one way to keep your cat safe this season. Ask your veterinarian for advice, as they are very knowledgeable about cat health.
Ideally, cats need to maintain a body temperature above 90 degrees to ward off hypothermia, so keeping your thermostat around 70 degrees is a good way to ensure they’ll stay comfortable. Cats prefer warmth but will be okay in rooms with temperatures between 60-80 degrees. Any temperature below 50 degrees is absolutely too cold for your cat.
Cats can quickly get exposed to hypothermia which creates extremely detrimental health issues for even the healthiest of felines. If you notice your cat curling up in tighter sleeping positions to stay warm, these may not be immediate warning signs, but they might indicate that your cat is feeling too cold.
Below are other indicators that your cat is too cold:
- Feeling cold to the touch, especially around their footpads, ears, and tail.
- Continuous shivering
- Dilated pupils
- Slower heart rate
- Weak, lethargic movements
If you see any of the above in your cat, it’s time to bring them to the vet immediately.
To do this, you need a human rectal thermometer, vaseline or KY Jelly for lubrication, a timer with a second hand and a towel. Prepare the thermometer by lubricating it with some vaseline, then hold the cat securely in place. Insert the thermometer slowly into its anus; after a depth of ½ or 1 inch, you relax.
Hold the thermometer in place for two minutes or until it gives off a beeping sound (for digital thermometers). Remove the thermometer, record the temperature, time, and date, and then wash your hands and the thermometer thoroughly with warm water and antiseptic soap.