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Nathalie Sari - Tiertraining & Verhaltensberatung

This article was written by TOBALIE in cooperation with Nathalie Sari - Tiertraining & Verhaltensberatung

When winter is approaching and the temperatures drop, we humans spend more and more time at home. In winter, our fur noses are also magically drawn to the warm living room and they become cozy room tigers. House cats look for warmth increasingly and even hard-nosed outdoor cats spend much time in the house in the winter months. But when is it really too cold and dangerous for cats to go outside? When should you stop letting your cat go outside and how can you tell if your cat is freezing?

Are cats outside in winter allowed?

In principle, yes! Adult healthy cats can usually withstand temperatures up to minus 20 degrees celsius without any problems. If your pet wants to go outside in winter despite the cold, you should give him this possibility, otherwise you would probably meet with protest anyway. But only if he is used to being outside all year round. If your darling lives indoors, you should not put him outside in winter, because his fur is not adapted to the sudden cold temperature.
Cat flaps, for example, allow your four-legged friend to enter the house or go outside the door at any time. Cats are individuals. The cold sensation of our beloved velvet paws is not only influenced by age, breed and state of health, but also a question of character. If your darling wants to stay inside, you should certainly not force him to go outside.

How well do cats tolerate the cold?

In general, cats are naturally very well equipped against the cold season: Of course there are a few exceptions, which are mainly related to the cat breed. The decisive factor here is whether the cat is used to being outside all year round or not.
Household cats do not develop such a dense fur, like outdoor cats. If the cat is accustomed to roaming outside, it gets a considerably denser winter-fur and a protecting warm undercoat in time. However, if the cat’s fur and undercoat become too wet, their insulating effect is lost and the cat will quickly start to freeze.
If your pet gets a cold, please visit a vet and let your cat get well in the warm living room.

When do cats start to freeze?

If your cat is too cold, you can tell from her body language and behaviour. Observe your pet and pay attention to his posture. If your darling squeezes the eyes tightly, puffs up his fur, makes himself very small, trembles, or shows signs of discomfort, he is obviously too cold. Cold-sensitive mostly are…                                                                                                                                                                               

  • Young kittens – The fur must first have grown properly before going outside for winter fun.
  • Older house tigers – Elder cats prefer to enjoy themselves in a warm home anyway.
  • Sick cats freeze faster – Cats with weakened immune systems always need a cozy place that is protected from draughts to lie down and plenty of warmth.
  • Habitual house cats – If you are not used to go outside, don’t start this winter.
  • Wet cats – If cats get wet, they should definitely come into the house, otherwise they are threatened by hypothermia. Dry your darling thoroughly when they come into the house and make sure the paws are dry too.
  • Cats with little or no fur. Some breeds of cats have no warming undercoat and others have no coat at all. These animals freeze very quickly and should not be taken outside in winter.

Green Rubin - Katzenangel

Die nachhaltige und langlebige Katzenangel aus Sisal und Holz.

Hot tips for cold days:

  • Warm paws: If the floor is particularly cold (stone, tile) without underfloor heating, it is worth laying out carpets or tiles of heat-insulating material, at least in wintertime.
  • Beware of overheating: Warmth is good, but dry heating air can lead to an unhealthy room climate and annoying side effects (e.g.: dry skin, dry eyes, strain on the respiratory tract) in the long run. Humidifiers improve the air in the heating season for your sweet cat as well. Alternatively, you can hang a wet towel over the heater or place a bowl of water on top.
  • Cuddling class: The favorite places and hiding places of your cat should be particularly cuddly in wintertime. Above all young kittens need to be cuddly and warm at home in the first time and should not go outside. During the winter months, it is best to support small and old house tigers with many warm places to retreat and a lot of affection.
  • Cat shelters: You can buy shelters for the outside area in stores but you can also make them yourself. It is important that the hut is waterproof, windproof, insulated with heat-insulating material (for example, with cork boards or other natural materials) and softly lined (with straw, blankets, padding).
  • Avoid draught: Especially if your darling likes to sit at the window sill to enjoy the beautiful view, you should not only make this area safely accessible, but also cuddly and warm.                                                                                                                                                                               – Provide distraction: Especially outdoor cats are bored in winter when they cannot go outside. That’s why you should plan many fun hours of play with your darling to sweeten his stay at home.
  • If your cat goes outside in winter, make sure to keep the litter box clean and provide enough fresh water and food during the cold season. Because in the high snow some cats find it difficult to do their business and the food supply (catching mice, etc.) decreases.
Winter Katze draußen


Basically cats decide for themselves whether they want to go outside in winter or not. If your sweetheart wants to get outdoors or onto the balcony at all costs, you can provide small, cosy shelters against the cold for him. In wet weather or stormy weather, however, it’s better to keep even stubborn open air fanatics inside and entertain them with varied play ideas. If the weather is particularly bad, visibility on the road becomes an additional risk factor that you should take into account. It is important to provide your treasure with a warm and comfortable home at all times, where it can protect itself from the cold and store heat. During the cold season it is especially important to indulge your furry nose with lots of exciting games and cuddly oases of rest. This way you will get closer and surely spend a nice cozy winter together.