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Top 10 Tips for Caring for your Feral Cat in Winter [Part 2]

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In the last article, we did an introduction and covered 5 tips on how to help your feral cat stay safe and warm during winter. If you have yet to read get it here:  Caring for your Feral Cat in winter [part 1]

This is part 2, and we’ll cover the remaining 5 tips. Let’s dive in.

6. Use Pet-safe Ice Melts

Most ice melts contain harmful chemicals and salts that can burn and irritate your cat's paws. Ingestion of these substances can also lead to vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, and worse. Alternatively, use pet-friendly substances on your driveways and sidewalks. More importantly, apply some jelly on your cat's paw pads before they head outside. Again, wipe and towel the paws gently once they return from the cold.

7. Check for Frostbite

Cats are most vulnerable to frostbite on their ears, nose, tail, and toes because these areas are more exposed and have minimal fur. Check regularly for signs of frostbite. Parts affected by frostbite exhibit pale or bluish-white color and feel colder than other body parts. If you notice frostbite, take your cat to the vet immediately.

8. Watch Out for Antifreeze

The Humane Society estimates that nearly 100,000 die annually from antifreeze poisoning, with fatality rates for cats at 78-96%. Antifreeze's sweet taste may be enticing to cats, but it's incredibly toxic and deadly. Avoid involuntary poisoning by keeping any antifreeze bottles out of your cat's reach and clean up any spills or leaks quickly and thoroughly. Moreover, switch to propylene glycol brands compared to ethylene glycol brands as they're less toxic although still harmful.

9. Check Your Car Before Driving

Cats can sometimes seek shelter in the nooks and crannies of cars on freezing days. Before starting your vehicle, check the hood and ensure no cat is hiding underneath or inside the engine for warmth. Equally important, check between your tires and wheel wells.

10. Consider the Indoors for Extremely Cold Days

If the weather outside is frigid for you, then it's too cold for your cat. Encourage your cat, especially elderly cats, to stay indoors at such times.

The weather outside may be grueling, but your kitty doesn't have to feel the effect. Following the tips listed above will help keep your cat safer and more comfortable.

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