You Can Help Strays Survive “Coldest Winter In A Generation” With This DIY Cat Shelter

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Across the country, Americans are gearing up for another polar vortex, which is expected to deliver what experts are calling “the coldest winter in a generation.”

Several cities, including Chicago, are bracing for record low temperatures, schools have temporarily shuttered, and residents have been warned not to venture outside, or breath too deeply, for risk of exposure and frostbite. Similarly, pet owners have been warned to keep their pets indoors.

Frequently lost in the shuffle, however, are the country’s millions of feral cats, many of whom won’t survive this record cold without your help. Fortunately, it’s relatively easy to build a feral cat shelter to host your neighborhood strays. All you’ll need is a plastic storage tub, a Styrofoam cooler, a sharp knife, and plenty of straw.

Photo: YouTube/Cole & Marmalade

1. Cut a 5 ½ inch diameter hole into one side of the plastic tub

Photo: YouTube/Cole & Marmalade

2. Insert Styrofoam cooler and cut matching hole in side.

Photo: YouTube/Cole & Marmalade

3. Partially fill the cooler with clean straw, essentially creating a nest to keep the feral cat(s) warm.

Photo: YouTube/Cole & Marmalade

4. Place the tub in an alley, near a dumpster, or wherever feral cats usually gather.

If there’s a large feral colony in your neighborhood, just use a larger cooler/tub to keep everyone warm.

Photo: YouTube/Cole & Marmalade

The video below shows how can make your own feral cat shelter! It’s so easy!

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J. Swanson is a writer, traveler, and animal-enthusiast based in Seattle, an appropriately pet-crazed city where dog or cat ownership even outweighs the number of kids. When the weather permits, she likes to get outside and explore the rest of the Pacific Northwest, always with a coffee in hand.
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