Will Indoor Cats Grow A Winter Coat?
Ever wondered how wild cats stay warm in freezing colds?
Furry mammals have something underneath their cute furs called a winter coat that helps them stay warm and cozy.
Cats also do the same when placed outside, but do indoor cats grow a winter coat?
In this article, I’m going to be walking you through everything you need to know about winter coats, and if indoor cats can grow them.
Let’s get on with it!
What’s A Winter Coat?
Simply put, it’s like a thick fluffy natural undercoat for your kitty.
A cat has cute long hairs, right? Those are called guard hairs which also give a cat their distinctive appearance. Beneath that fur coat, a cat has a dense layer of fur which helps your cat survive through extreme colds.
While the outer fur is mostly colored and attractive, the undercoat is grayish and rather plain looking. The undercoat gets thicker when a cat needs more warmth, like during the winter.
Will Indoor Cats Grow A Winter Coat?
Cat hair is influenced by light intensity more than it’s affected by temperatures.
An outdoor cat receives more daylight and hence, grows brighter, and thicker hair as compared to an indoor cat that receives little light.
If you’ve got an indoor-only cat, it will grow a winter coat for sure. But it won’t be as thick as a cat acclimated to stay outdoors.
It also depends on the cat breeds. Some breeds are more likely than others to grow a thick coat.
That’s because your beloved kitty already has a safe favorable environment indoors while an outdoor cat needs to stay warm throughout the cold winter nights.
Should You Be Concerned?
Winter coats may not be distinguishable sometimes.
If you keep your cat with you in your home, you do not need to worry about your cat being cold.
Cats have adapted to stay outdoors and can withstand lower temperatures than we can.
If you like, you can put on a warm blanket over them or just have them snuggle with you on your bed to make sure that they are nice and cozy.
You may want to pay some attention to balanced cat food and regular brushing your cat to make sure that it stay itch free and fluffy.
If a cat’s uncomfortable, it will tell you by meowing or biting on you, or by doing something. It depends on their individual personality but you can rest assured that they’ll always choose to stay in warm places- like your lap or by the fireplace.
So, they won’t be cold at all.
How To Care For Your Cat In The Winter?
Unlike us humans who need to put on heavy overcoats and furry scarves to survive going out in the colds, our furry friends have furs as a natural layer of insulation.
You don’t necessarily need to put on a thick blanket over your kitty, but you may want to consider the things that may cause your kitty to shiver. And this doesn’t just apply to your cat- it also applies to any furry pets you might have.
Cats, like humans, go through different stages of hair growth. A tiny hair grows from a follicle on the skin of your cat, and slowly grows longer.
Over time, it matures, gains color pigments and falls off. A new hair will later grow back in it’s place.
It’s important to understand that this cycle repeats twice every year- in the winter when your cat grows a thick hair to protect itself from low temperatures during colder months, and shedding occurs in the spring.
You can care for your cat by gently combing their hairs. It not only helps get rid of the excess hairs on your sheets but also helps reduce the amount of loose hairs they ingest while grooming.
It also helps you stay healthy as cat hair contains some allergens that can cause respiratory issues in humans.
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Winter coats are necessary for cats to survive adverse conditions. Indoor cats do grow their own version of a lighter coat but it’s not as thick or dense as outdoor cats.
It’s very necessary for you to comb their hairs every once in a while. It not only helps your cat stay adorable but also helps with their (and your) health.
Cat owners do not need to worry if their cat's hair seems to look different during different months. It's pretty natural for new hairs to be slightly different in texture and color.