meggie, I'm curious to know what those shelters look like. I'm wondering if they're like the one I have, which is wood with a pitched roof that you can lift off for cleaning.
Hm. I have a doghouse in the porch that could become a just-in-case second shelter. It's quite a bit bigger than the cat house, and the opening is a lot bigger as well, so straw would be good to fill up a lot of that space.
Currently, his alternate to keep warm is another cup bed on top of a heated pad that I took out of a pet cushion, but it's just on the rug inside the porch. I wonder if it would it be ok to put straw in the doghouse, then put the heated pad and bed on top, if I make sure that the pad is completely covered and not in contact with the straw?