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Fall With Fluffy

October 1, 2023

Autumn is officially upon us. As the stores overflow with pumpkin and maple flavored everything, many of our furry patients are noticing the crisp air, and perhaps getting the  autumn zoomies. Of course, like any season, fall does have a few specific concerns and dangers for pet owners to be aware of. A Sandstone, MN vet lists some of them in this article.


Fluffy’s pretty coat is her main source of protection against cold weather. Most cats are pretty good about grooming themselves, but some need some help with their beauty routines. Longhaired kitties, for instance, can get matted, particularly under their ‘armpits’. Senior cats also have trouble cleaning themselves. Get into the habit of brushing your feline pal regularly.

Offer Warm Napping Spots

One thing we all know about cats? They’re collectively very, very tired. Fluffy will spend the vast majority of autumn sleeping. Providing plenty of warm napping spots. These don’t have to be fancy: kitties love getting comfy on soft blankets folded up and put into boxes or wicker baskets, or even just placed on ottomans.

Be Aware Of Safety Concerns

We always recommend keeping cats indoors, no matter what season it is. There are just too many potential threats out there, including wild animals, weather, stray cats, parasites, cars, and chemicals. Plus, many seasonal plants, such as chrysanthemums, are poisonous to our feline buddies. If you do let Fluffy out, limit her excursions to daytime.

Don’t Leave Fluffy In Darkness

The sun is going down sooner now. If your feline friend stays home alone while her humans are at work, leave a light on for her. Sitting alone in a dark, quiet house is no fun for people or pets! Your cute pet may also appreciate having a radio on.

Continue Preventative Care

Fleas, ticks, and other parasites aren’t as prevalent in fall, but that doesn’t mean they don’t pose a threat. In fact, many will be actively trying to get inside. Keep up with your kitty’s preventative care. 

Decorate Carefully

Do you enjoy decorating for the holidays? Keep your furry friend’s safety in mind. Any small or sharp objects are a potential hazard, as are any objects with ropes or cords, such as string lights, garlands, and fake cobwebs. Anything in plastic wrap is also a concern. Keep candles in high spots, and use grates before fireplaces. 

Our Advice on Fall With Fluffy in 2024

How does autumn affect cats’ behavior, and what are the common signs?

Autumn can bring noticeable changes in cats’ behavior, often due to cooler temperatures and shorter daylight hours. Common signs include increased energy levels, leading to the “autumn zoomies,” where cats may exhibit bursts of activity. Some cats may seek out warmer spots around the house for napping as they instinctively prepare for colder weather. Additionally, you might observe more frequent grooming as they transition to a thicker winter coat. These behavioral shifts are natural responses to the changing season, reflecting cats’ environmental adaptation.

Why is it essential to provide warm napping spots for cats during autumn?

Providing warm napping spots for cats during autumn is crucial because, as the temperature drops, cats seek out cozy areas to maintain their body heat and comfort. Warm spots cater to this instinct, ensuring they stay comfortable and stress-free. Additionally, warmth supports healthy joints, particularly in senior cats with arthritis or stiffness. These spots can prevent cold-related discomfort and promote security and well-being, making them essential for a cat’s physical and emotional health during the cooler months.

What are the safety concerns for cats in the fall season?

In the fall season, safety concerns include the increased risk of exposure to cooler temperatures, which can lead to hypothermia in outdoor cats. There’s also a higher likelihood of encountering toxic antifreeze and rodenticides, which are more commonly used as people prepare for winter. The presence of wild animals preparing for winter can pose a threat, and seasonal decorations may present choking or ingestion hazards. Additionally, shorter days mean reduced visibility, increasing the risk of accidents for cats that go outdoors. Monitoring these risks closely is crucial to ensure cats’ safety during autumn.

Why is continuous preventative care against parasites important in the fall?

Continuous preventative care against parasites is crucial in the fall because many parasites, including fleas, ticks, and heartworms, remain active and can thrive in cooler temperatures. They seek out warm hosts, like cats, to survive. This time of year can also increase wildlife activity, which can further spread parasites to domestic pets. Regular preventative treatments ensure protection against these parasites, which can cause serious health issues. They help keep your cat healthy and reduce the risk of infestation in your home.

What steps can be taken to make a home comfortable for cats during the autumn months?

To make a home comfortable for cats during autumn, ensure warm and cozy napping spots by providing soft blankets and beds in quiet, draft-free areas. Increase indoor stimulation with toys and climbing structures as outdoor activities may decrease. Check heating systems to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature without hot spots or cold drafts. Regular grooming helps manage their changing coat. Keep the home well-lit during shorter days to support their natural activity patterns. Lastly, continue flea and tick prevention to protect against autumn-active parasites. These steps create a safe, engaging, and warm environment for cats.

Contact us, your Sandstone, MN animal clinic, for all of your cat’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!