I’m extra protective over my cats, and I often go the extra mile to make sure that they’re comfortable. So when the summer time arrives, bringing 80+ degree days with it, I will take extra steps to make sure my babies are cool in every way possible.
When people get hot, we can sweat to cool down, grab a glass of ice water, or go to into an AC cooled store. Cats (and dogs) don’t have the same luxuries, so it’s up to us to help them stay cool. Here are a few tips for how to keep cats extra cool in the summer if you’re not able to afford central air or can’t leave a window AC unit on all day.
* Note: If you live in an area where the temperatures exceed 100 degrees regularly (hello Arizona), I definitely do not recommend ever leaving a pet inside without a proper cooling unit.
Avoid Cutting a Cat’s Hair Too Low
Some people groom their cats in the summer time as a way of keeping them cool, but after doing some research I found that leaving some hair on cats can actually help them stay cooler. So instead of shaving your kitty bald in the summer, ask your groomer to do a cut that will allow your cat to preserve some of his or her “air conditioning” fur.
Ice Water Bowl
One of the best ways to keep your cat cool is to ensure that he or she has plenty of really cold water throughout the day. If you must leave for more than a few hours, put a bowl of water in your freezer the night before and then set it out the next day. This will allow for the ice to slowly melt and stay cold for as long as possible. If your cat has an issue with knocking over his or her water bowl, see this post.
Pet Cooling Mats
I recently found a new innovation for cats and dogs that keeps them extra cool—a pet cooling mat. Your cat lays on it and experiences a cooling sensation for a few hours. This pet mat doesn’t require any electricity or a battery pack, which is a major plus. It contains a special gel that begins “recharging” as soon as your cat gets up. If you have two of them in your home, that should cover an entire summer day.
Cats just love to sit near open windows, no matter how hot it is outside. One way that you can keep them cool while being energy efficient is to buy a standard twin window fan. Your kitty will likely sit next to the fan and nap the afternoon away.
Turn Off the Lights…
During the day in the summertime, turn off all of the lights in your apartment or house. Open the blinds slightly instead to let some natural light into your home, or use heat blocking sheer curtains. Light bulbs often let off a lot of heat that can increase the temperature in a room by a few degrees. If you must leave a light on, make sure it’s an energy saving bulb.
Try a Mini Dehumidifier
Sometimes taking the hot muggy moisture out of the air can make a room feel cooler and more bearable. If you’re trying to save money and minimize energy usage, get a small energy efficient dehumidifier that can trap some of the moisture in one of the rooms of your house. Make sure you buy one that shuts off automatically when the water tank fills up.
Cats Instinctively Know How to Stay Cool
Cats have a biological instinct to manage their temperature and stay cool, even on hot summer days. They lick their fur, reduce activity, and find cool spots. Just keep an eye on them on the weekends when you’re home in the early morning and afternoon to see how they do on a really warm day without an AC on.
Whenever you’re able, consider buying a small, energy efficient window AC or portable AC and leave it on in one room of your house where your cats can go to enjoy some cool air.
Posted by Jade
Images courtesy of Amazon and Pixabay (buy someone a coffee!)
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