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Cats prefer the warmth of a sunny window, but do cats like snow?

Do cats like snow?

It's no secret some cats can be a little finicky about their creature comforts. On a chilly, rainy day, many cats prefer staying warm and dry in the house, looking out the window at their canine counterparts that may be happily frolicking through puddles without a care. But what about snow? Do cats enjoy being outdoors on a snowy day in the winter? Do they enjoy playing in the snow? What about cold weather itself? Do cats like that?

Cats prefer the warmth of a sunny window, but do cats like snow?

Cats: a Warm, Dry Heritage

Before diving into whether cats like the snow, first think about where cats were originally domesticated — places like Egypt near the Sahara and the Fertile Crescent east of the Mediterranean Sea. Temperatures there range from hot summers to cool winters, and the overall climates are arid and dry. The cats domesticated in those locations were suited to the region, and, other than a few select breeds, most modern cats haven't particularly been bred for a change in climate. So, your cat probably isn't particularly suited to cold, wet weather. It's not that they can't handle the occasional cold snap or even become somewhat acclimated to winter. But they'll never be as adapted to it as a Siberian Husky or Newfoundland dog. This desert heritage may also contribute to the dislike most cats have for baths, rain and moisture in general.

Do cats like the cold?

In many cases, cats don't like the cold. Some indoor/outdoor cats that need their routine no matter the weather may still insist on going out in cold weather — but they may choose to come in much sooner. Outdoor cats may be more used to the cold but need assistance to help stay warm (see below). Once the temperature drops below about 45°F, you probably need to curtail their opportunities to explore outside (i.e., lock the pet door) or provide them with a warm shelter where they can retreat if they get too cold. Anything below about 45°F is the temperature where they need assistance to stay safely outdoors.

Do cats like snow?

Despite all this, it's not uncommon for cats to actually enjoy playing in the snow. Depending on the weather conditions, some snow can actually be quite powdery and dry. And as long as their fur is dry and thus insulating properly, some cats can have fun in the snow.

If your indoor cat is a curious type with a bit of an adventurous streak, you might consider allowing him to have a little playtime in the snow to see how he likes it (a cat leash might be appropriate here for some cats). You naturally want to avoid heavy snowfalls, high winds, deep cold temperatures and other concerns, but a pleasant winter romp in the snow could be a fun diversion, offering you both a fresh source of entertainment and helping to push away a winter case of cabin fever.

Keeping Them Warm and Dry — Outdoor Cat Houses

If your cat spends the bulk of his time outside or in unheated spaces like a barn or garage, or you're trying to care for a feral cat, then a cozy outdoor cat house is certainly in order. There are plenty of options:

K&H Outdoor Two-Story Kitty House with Dining Room

Outdoor Cat Essentials

Beyond cat houses, you can provide other cold-weather comforts to ensure your feline stays warm when it's cold out.

  • K&H Thermo-Kitty Café. When the temperature dips below 32°F, your pet's food and water will freeze — but not with the right heated bowls! The Thermo-Kitty Café is one of the only safety-certified heated bowls on the market that keeps both food and water from freezing. (Most heated bowls will burn the food on the bottom, while the food on top stays frozen.) 
K&H Thermo-Kitty Cafe Cat Heated Bowl

Indoor-only cat? Don't let her miss out on the fun, especially if you keep the thermostat a little lower during the day when everybody's at work and school. When the weather outside is frightful, these beds with washable covers may be so delightful:

K&H Thermo-Kitty Fashion Splash

Cozy Kitties All Season Long

You may discover your cat loves snow — or hates it! (Cats are such unique individuals, with all the accompanying opinions!) Maybe he enjoys some fun in the fluff, or perhaps he's more tuned to his ancient roots and prefers to stay dry most of the time. Regardless of his weather preferences, a cozy bed will help keep him comfy throughout the winter season.

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