Cold Weather and Cats

It is the first winter of the Pupicats in Berlin. And although they are all indoor cats, I often ponder about outdoor cats and how they deal with the cold. My mother in law told me a story about their neighbor’s cat, who they often see outside, all night, in the cold. They felt so sorry for the cat that they built him a shelter in their backyard, in case the cat gets cold and can’t go in his own house. Aside from the obvious that this neighbor is an irresponsible pet owner, we don’t know the entire story why they often keep the cat locked out in the cold all night long. Although, I’ve heard that they think the cat, being an independent creature, can withstand cold because of its fur. That is not entirely true.

Cats may seem to be able to tolerate the cold weather in our eyes, because they don’t shiver like us, and they don’t normally demand for a sweater or a coat if they want to roam outside. But as any other domesticated animal, they have lost their wild instinct. They have lost that extra layer of fur or fats that they would have possibly developed if they were born and raised in the wild. And even so, they still can freeze and starve to death in the wild on cold/winter times if they don’t find a shelter. Their needs are basically the same as ours – get warm and dry. They may seem to get by cold weather outside better than us, but that doesn’t mean they are comfortable. If you let your cat out, make sure that he/she have an access back to the house in case you can’t wait for him/her anymore.

Bottom line, with or without snow, freezing or not, do not leave your cats outside the house. Just like you and me, they feel cold and lonely. They need warmth and a comfortable place to chill.

As for Sylvia, being a summer loving cat used to the tropical weather, here’s how she’s coping: