For many of us, winter is a time of dread. Nothing quite says “this is the literal worst” like having to crawl out of your apartment at 5 am to scrape snow off your car while your warm little dumpling of a cat is still nestled in bed. But what’s worse is worrying about whether or not I’m prepared for The Big Storm – the one everyone on the news is always warning you about. Rapture or no rapture, I always want to make sure I’m prepared. Not for myself of course, but for my babies. So what’s a concerned single cat mom to do when she hears that a storm’s a-brewin’? Here are a few examples of steps that you can take to ensure that your cats will be safe and warm, should that snow storm of biblical proportions ever find us.
Check Your Stock
First and perhaps most obviously, make sure your food supply is well stocked. If your collection of kitty chow is looking a little lean, get a few extra bags and cans next time you’re out and about. In accordance with Murphy’s Law, the roads are always iciest when your cat food is lowest, so spare yourself the future grief and throw a few more tins of tuna in your cart next time you’re shopping for your snugglewumps. This goes for other things as well such as litter, treats, and anything special that you buy for your cat on a routine basis, such as particular dietary supplies (especially for kittens and senior cats).
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Prepare For The Worst
As with most storms, it’s not unusual for your power – and maybe even other utilities as well – to go out for hours, sometimes even days. Make sure you’ve got a bundle of warm blankets and towels for your babies to keep them warm should the worst come to pass. And don’t forget to buy candles. LOTS of candles. They often sell devotional candles in supermarkets and drugstores. These are ideal, as they are long lasting and self-contained (meaning they pose less of a fire hazard should a certain 4-legged honey-glazed ham knock one over, you know, just for funsies).
Cat-Proof Your Abode
Next, block off any unsafe area in your house where your cat could try to hide and possibly get stuck. Cats are resourceful, and if they’re scared enough, they can weasel their way into just about any space. For instance, my cat Polly once got her big fat kitty tush stuck between a bureau and a wall, and it took quite a lot of painful finagling on my part to get her loose. If you have a more cluttered living situation and find that doing something like that might be unrealistic, choose a room that’s more open and empty, and keep your baby in there with a nice warm bed, cat box, food and water dish until the storm passes. If she has a favorite toy, leave it in the room with her to help ease any anxiety.
In case of a storm, it is ideal for your cats to have proper ID. Make sure your sweet babies have a collar with identifying tags on them, or better yet – get your babybean microchipped! The likelihood of a cat getting totally spooked and shooting out of your front door like a horse at a racetrack is surprisingly high during a natural disaster, and you want to make sure you’ve done everything in your power to make sure the public knows that your baby belongs to you.
The last thing to remember is to stay calm! All animals, cats included, pick up on certain vibes we humans send out, and if you’re anxious, chances are your cat is feeling it too. So practice your game face, make sure your sweet potato has her tags, and stock up on the essentials listed here, and you’ll be good to go!