It’s important to consider your cat’s comfort during the summer months. Dogs tend to be very upfront about being too hot. They might bark, howl, pant, or dig to remind you that they are uncomfortable. Cats are generally more subtle, but can suffer just as much in hot, humid weather.
Like dogs, cats do not sweat, except from their paw pads. They will pant, but don’t reach the panting extremes that most dogs do. Cats will also try to cool themselves by licking their coats and counting on evaporative cooling effects. You can add to this effect by gently wiping your cat with a cool damp cloth. A few cats will even enjoy being sprayed with a mister, but not all cats will tolerate this.
If you have central air conditioning, you might find your cat hogging the cool air vents and even lying down directly on top of any floor vents. If you have fans in your home, your cat will also tend to carefully place himself where he gets the best airflow. To create some cooler air if you don’t have air conditioning, you can place a bowl or tub of ice in front of a fan. The fan will blow the air across the ice with the end result being cooler temperatures.
Your cat will need plenty of fresh water during hot days. Many cats are entranced by moving water and will drink more from a fountain than a simple water dish. Cats may play with ice cubes either on the floor or in their water bowls. To encourage drinking, you could add a little low sodium chicken broth to the mix.
Cats that are not lactose intolerant might enjoy a treat of frozen plain or vanilla yogurt. Again, you could make your own special treat by adding some low sodium chicken broth or the juice from a can of tuna packed in water.
With just a little effort, you can provide your cat with some serious relief from the summer heat.