Winter Trouble - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-24-2012, 09:51 PM Thread Starter
Kitten
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 8
Winter Trouble

My family and I are taking care of a stray cat since spring time. We have two German Shepherd dogs in the house so the cat probably won't like living inside the house. She never tried to enter the house either. My main question is what should we do with her during the winter. I live in Utah (United States) where winter can be very harsh. We want to take her inside but we don't know if she's be too stressed out by the dogs, one of them doesn't like her too much. Please help, we want to do the best for her
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-26-2012, 10:47 AM
Jr. Cat
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: FL
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Are your dogs cat-aggressive? You can start introducing them by having a solid wood door, locked, between them. Have someone take the dogs out for a walk, and take the cat inside one of the bedrooms (having windows available for once-outdoor cats is vital to their adjustment). Make sure there's tall furniture or a tall cat tower. Also make sure there's comfortable places to hide in the room. Food, water, and litter all can be in that room and the dogs will learn through your reinforcements that they are not permitted to enter. Eventually the kitty will want to explore the rest of the house (it can take up to 2 weeks for them to come around). When the kitty starts pawing under the door, let the dogs sniff her paws but make sure they aren't mouthy with her. After a few days of smells being integrated, use a baby-gate to allow visual access to each other. Keep the baby gate in place until the cat decides to leave the room on her own. (By now, you're halfway through winter). Then make sure you're monitoring their interactions to avoid injury and stress.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-27-2012, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
Kitten
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
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Thank you Thai I don't know if my dogs are cat-aggressive or not since I never had them close to her before. They were always behind the main doorway. There are long windows so each can see eachother. One of the dogs, Sunia, loves to woof once or twice when we go outside to feed her, Mishka. I don't know if Mishka would want to live inside all the time during the winter, since she lived more or less 9 years in the open she's used to it... The ending of last winter, when it was very cold outside, we would take her inside to mine or my mom's room during the night and then in the morning we would take her back outside. Is that smart?
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-27-2012, 10:21 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: FL
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if she really doesn't like being indoors then you can get an electric blanket (just be careful of fire hazards) and put it in the garage/porch/dog house/crate so she has somewhere that protects her from the wind and that's warm. put food and water in the sheltered area and she'll probably be ok.. If she'll tolerate it, then have her inside when it gets below freezing but keep the heat source and shelter available to her during day hours. Even incubator lights can produce just enough heat to save an animals life in the winter. Again, be mindful of warnings and fire hazards.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-28-2012, 01:17 AM Thread Starter
Kitten
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
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Alright, thank you for the help! It's really appreciated! I'll do it
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