Wed 14th Jun 2023

Feline Heatstroke – risks and prevention

Cats bring joy and companionship to millions of people around the world. One of their favourite activities is to lay out in the sun or on a sunny window ledge. However, during hot weather, cats can be susceptible to heatstroke, a condition that can be life-threatening if not treated promptly. In this article created by Vet Scott, we’ll discuss how to prevent heatstroke in cats and the signs to look out for.

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Top Tips for Keeping Cats Safe this Summer

Keep your cat indoors

Although we may not get as much warm weather as we perhaps desire in Wiltshire, when it does heat up it’s best to keep your cat indoors in a cool and well-ventilated room. This will help prevent them from overheating and keep them safe from outdoor hazards such as cars, predators, and toxic plants. If your cat is an outdoors wanderer, try to encourage them back indoors as often as possible.

Provide plenty of water

Make sure your cat has access to clean and fresh water at all times. Scott suggests placing multiple water bowls throughout your home, especially in cooler areas like the bathroom. You can also add ice cubes to their water to keep it cool. You may want to place a bowl or two outdoors as well if your cat does like to venture out.

Provide a cool environment

Ensure that your cat’s environment is cool and well-ventilated. Use fans or air conditioning to keep the air circulating and the temperature comfortable. You can also provide cool surfaces for your cat to lie on, such as a tile or marble floor.

Avoid exercise during the hottest parts of the day

Avoid exercising your cat during the hottest parts of the day, such as midday when the sun is at its peak. Instead, exercise your cat in the early morning or late evening when the temperature is cooler.

Groom your cat regularly

Regular grooming can help prevent heatstroke by removing excess fur that can trap heat and make your cat uncomfortable. Brush your cat daily to remove loose fur and matting.

Signs of heatstroke in cats

If your cat is exhibiting any of the following signs, they may be experiencing heatstroke and require immediate attention. Call Estcourt Vets on 01380 723687 to speak to one of our vets in Devizes.

  • Excessive panting or drooling
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Reddened gums or tongue
  • Lethargy or weakness
  • Vomiting or diarrhoea
  • Confusion or disorientation
  • Seizures or collapse

If you suspect that your cat is experiencing heatstroke, contact your vet for advice immediately. In the meantime, try to cool your cat down by providing them with cool water to drink, wetting their fur with tepid (not cold) water, and placing them in front of a fan.

Scott says that following these simple tips and knowing the signs to look out for can help keep your cat safe and comfortable during hot weather. Remember to always provide plenty of water, keep your cat cool, and seek veterinary attention if you suspect your cat is experiencing heatstroke.

Use the button below to book your own cat’s summer health check and don’t forget to share this article with other cat owners.

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