Protecting Stray Cats in Winter

Stray Cat Snow

If you live in a part of the world that experiences frigid temperatures every winter, you can imagine how much homeless cats suffer living without any shelter to speak of. Some of the warmer places cats seek out such as car engines pose an even greater danger than the weather.

We can help these poor creatures survive the cold by following a few simple suggestions.

Before starting your car, bang on the hood to scare any cats away. Check under your car, especially near tires where some cats will hide.

If you have an enclosed porch with a door, place some boxes, either cardboard or wood out there facing away from the door. Newspaper makes a pretty good insulator to cover the bottoms. Leave food and water nearby.

Thick Styrofoam placed in a rubber or plastic bin provides very good insulation. If you don’t have an enclosed porch, place the bin on its side in an area where it is protected from the wind and the elements.

Using a summer cooler, make a hole in the side, about 6-8 inches round, just enough for the cat to go in and out.

The best bedding for any of these enclosures is straw which is absorbent and welcome to a wet cat.

If you have an old dog house or a sturdy dog or cat carrier that has only one open side, these can be turned into shelters with the addition of straw.

Make sure your shelters and any other hiding places are cleared of snow so that cats have easy access.

Place any food and water close to shelters so cats don’t have to go searching.

Don’t use chemicals or salt to clear snow – they are dangerous to paws and when animals lick their paws, they are ingesting toxins.

Clean up any antifreeze spills and store containers out of an animal’s reach.

We welcome any other ideas you have to help strays during the cold winter season.

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