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Stray Cats in Winters : Cats, one of humankind’s most commonly loved feline friends, are incredibly adaptable animals. They can thrive in a variety of environments and conditions. Feral cats that are not used to human interaction can fend for themselves in the wild, but the same cannot be said for stray city cats.

Stray cats are not so fortunate in this regard as they don’t know how to adapt to extreme conditions. So a stray cat could do with some human help, especially during wintertime.

That said, here’s a guide to caring for stray cats in the winter. Continue reading to learn everything from providing a warm shelter to meeting the cats’ nutritional needs.

Stray Cats in Winters

Outdoor Shelter

Cats have a warm fur coat for protection and warmth during winters. Believe it or not, cats can survive freezing temperatures if they know how to protect themselves. Now, this is where you can also pitch in. Listed below are some suggestions for providing outdoor shelter:

Although stray cats are quite capable of finding a warm shelter for themselves, you can also build one for them. For example, you can utilize any room between the garage and the hedgerow. You can make a wonderful tiny refuge in that area with a few supplies from your storage.

You may construct a shelter from the ground up using inexpensive resources such as wood and straw. Everything you will need may be found at your local hardware store for a reasonable price.

Your stray friend might not be pleased if other animals invade their space. Keeping their shelter’s doorway small is hence recommended. Make sure the entrance is wide enough just for the cat to enter and leave.

Stray Cats in Winters

Make sure the refuge you build is insulated. Straw is an excellent insulator for both the floor and the walls. Hay should not be used since it absorbs moisture.

Despite your best efforts to provide a pleasant shelter, if a cat refuses to occupy it, adding a little catnip might help attract him or her.

If your furry friend refuses to enter even after building a shelter, it could be that it already has found one. Try and locate that spot. After discovering it, you can make it better by adding more insulation. Or you could just wait for another cat to house themselves in your shelter.

Trap-Neuter-Release TNR Strategy

Caring for Stray Cats in Winters 1

The trap-neuter-release method entails trapping a stray cat and transporting it to a veterinarian for spaying or neutering. The stray feline is then returned to the spot where it was taken from.

For various reasons, experts suggest the winter season is an excellent time for TNR. Pregnancy is much less likely in winters, for starters, making female operations less problematic. Second, when the weather becomes colder, cats become less active. Healing is more effortless with a less energetic cat. Here are a few suggestions for a TNR strategy:

  1. A spayed cat will require some time to recuperate. Ensure you have a spot to hide before you catch the cat. When the cat is ready to be released, place it in the shelter you have built.
  2. Ensure the feline is released in the same approximate area where it was caught. The goal is to restore the cat to an environment to which it is already accustomed.
  3. You will have to monitor your feline friend frequently throughout the recuperation phase. If the cat was shaved before surgery, it could be cold. In this case, add more insulation to its shelter. You may also provide a cover for the cat to cuddle up in.

Food and Water

As additional energy is needed to stay warm, your feline friend tends to eat more during the winter months. You may notice this as the stray cat is hungrier than usual during the winter months.

However, there is nothing to be concerned about as this is normal behavior. You can also look for the best cat food recommended by Cat Food Point. Here are some food and water-related suggestions for your furry friend:

1. Moist edibles would freeze in winters, rendering them useless. If possible at all, stick to dry food.

2. If you must use moist food, ensure heating it before placing it outside. Microwaving for thirty seconds should suffice. Warm food will last longer without freezing as compared to cold food.

Caring for Stray Cats in Winters 2

3. Water will not freeze as quickly at depths. Hence, using a large bowl and filling it to the brim is recommended. You may be able to find a warm and sunny site for the water dish. Also, plastic is preferable over ceramic when it comes to avoiding freezing.

4. Installing a feeding platform is an excellent route to provide the cat with ample food and water while keeping it out of the environment. The feeding station can prevent meals from freezing due to the cat’s natural body temperature.


Helping stray cats spend the winter comfortably will make your wintertime more beautiful than ever. Remember always to keep the food and water away from the cat’s shelter, and keep the shelter well-insulated.