Are Cat Heating Pads Safe?

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Are Cat Heating Pads Safe?

In the winter months you might be looking for a way to keep your favorite feline warm — especially if you have drafty windows. Cats are sensitive to the cold just like we are, so if they’re spending extended periods of time in the cold weather, or just colder temperatures than normal, their immune system can be weakened and they run a higher chance of getting sick.

Your cat might like to sit by the vent or even in the sun, but with winter being a time when sunshine can be few and far between, what else can you do to keep your cat warm? One option is a cat heating pad. This is a small, cat-sized mat that sits on the floor, and when you plug it in it heats up. Similar to an electric blanket, these pads can give your cat a cuddly place to sit on cold days.

Cat heating pads seem like the perfect answer, a warm pad that your cat can sit on? Sounds perfect, right? However, some cat owners wonder about safety. Are cat heating pads safe? For the most part, yes.

The Positives

With cat heating pads, they require little electricity, so there’s not a high risk of fire, overheating, or electrocution. Since the pads are specific to cats, most won’t get hotter than a cat’s internal body temperature and you can feel comfortable leaving them on for extended periods of time. As a whole, with a cat heating pad is safe, so you won’t have to worry about it causing damage to your cat or your home.

Cat heating pads can give your cat a sense of security by giving them a space that is similar to a lap or a warm bed. In fact, most cats will think of it in the same way and find it comforting. They can also provide an easily accessible place for older cats who might get a little stiff during the colder months.

The Negatives

Unfortunately, there are situations in which a cat heating pad might not be safe in your home, but the key to knowing whether it’s worth it essentially comes down to how well you know your cat. The cat heating pad itself isn’t likely to hurt your cat. Your cat, on the other hand, might harm herself by messing around with the heating pad.

For example, if your cat has a habit of chewing things, she could chew through the cord or the pad and end up electrocuting or burning herself. If she goes further than chewing and actually starts to eat the pad, she could also end up with an intestinal blockage. Inside the pad are wires that create heat, and if they’re ingested they can wreak havoc on the inside of your cat and leave you with an enormous vet bill.

You’ll also want to make sure that if you get a heating pad, you don’t get one that can get any warmer than a cat’s body temperature. If the pad is left on too long and starts to get hotter, your cat could end up with burns.

Since the pad is electric, it has a cord. This also runs the risk of strangulation if your cat is rolling around with another cat near the cord and gets tangled up.

If you want to get a cat heating pad, do your research. Make sure you get a heating pad that’s well reviewed and doesn’t overheat. Once you have one, keep an eye on your cat while she’s using it to make sure she stays safe, and avoid leaving it on overnight.