If the shelter is too large, it will be difficult for the cat’s body heat to keep the space warm. Cats give each other body warmth and will huddle together in the cold. A space just big enough for three to five cats is best. A good shelter size is at least 2 x 3 ‘ and at least 18” high.
Insulation – Batting or Packaging Peanuts work great and are easy to find around the house. You can use Hay or Shredded Newspaper too. However some cats are allergic to Hay . It is important that whatever insulation you choose, it not be rigid or unable for the feline to burrow in it.
Hay may attract unwanted hungry wildlife and retain moisture in a cat shelter, so straw is the recommended bedding.
Feral cats will use most of their energy trying to stay warm in the frigid winter months. A regular, ample supply of food will help them conserve the energy they need to stay warm . It will also help their bodies sustain their natural insulation: thick coats and an extra layer of fat.
However, it is very important to get the mother cat back to her kittens at any age as soon as possible. If you stop feeding the feral cats they will just go away .
Cats , even if acclimated to outdoor temperatures should always have access to warm shelters. Kittens, cats advanced in age, or sick should never be kept outdoors when the temperature is below 45 degrees Fahrenheit.” If animals are kept outdoors during winter weather Dr.
How to Make an Outdoor Feral Cat Winter Shelter . Cats can find their own shelter , but you can also provide additional options where they can sleep, relax, warm up, and stay safe.
All good shelter designs share two qualities: Strong insulation – needed to trap body heat, which turns the cats into little radiators. Use straw, not hay or blankets. Minimal air space – a smaller interior area means that less heat is needed to keep the occupants warm.
Straw is the best option to use for bedding for any outdoor cat. It’s made from dry stalks that are left over after harvesting and does a wonderful job repelling moisture, which means that cats won’t get cold and wet when sleeping on straw .
An outdoor cat house filled with straw —not hay —will keep your feline friends warm and cozy during the winter. Straw , the dry leftover stalks from harvested crops, repels moisture, making it the best bedding for outdoor cat shelters. Loosely pack the straw in the shelter to the quarter or halfway point.
How to Keep Cats Warm in Winter Leave out a soft blanket, towel, or pet bed in a warm room so they can snuggle up on their own when they want to rest. If you have an older cat with arthritis, consider buying them a pet bed designed to soothe aching joints, which may bother them more in the colder months.