When I wake up in the morning on really cold days, the first thing I think about is how cold it outside and I feel sorry for anyone or anything that has to endure it. One of the things we try to be mindful of is stray kitties. We used to have a clowder of cats around our neighborhood but living out in the boonies has its perils. Bobcats, coyotes, and other wild animals have dwindled the pack's numbers to only a few.

We have a cat house though I don't believe it gets used much. Our own cat steps outside in the morning to potty and then rushes back in to get his hot meal and settles in for a day of napping in a warm bed.

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If you have stray cats around your home, there are a few things to consider.

  • Always knock on the hood of your car. A friend of mine was just telling me that he heard meowing in his boss' vehicle the other day and when they opened it, they found a stray pussycat huddled inside the car. They huddle up near the engine because it's warm. He took a wild ride and thankfully being misplaced was his only problem that day.
  • If you want to provide shelter for strays or barn kitties, make sure you use an insulated box like an old cooler and line them with STRAW and not hay, blankets, or bedding. Blankets and hay can get wet and freeze. Straw is better.
  • Avoid salt and toxic snow melting chemicals where your strays live.
  • Provide fresh water if you can. If water is frozen, it's hard to get a good drink.
  • If you need to take an animal to animal control, DO NOT just leave it outside. Take it in during business hours.
  • If you see a pet living outside that's not properly being cared for, call your local animal control or the police. States laws vary on providing shelter for your pets.

If you are in need of a cat house, message Saved by Grace Animal Rescue in Southern IL to get yours free-of-charge.

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