Keep your cats safe as clocks go back

As the clocks go back and the nights get longer, PDSA is sharing a lucky cat’s story to raise awareness of the dangers dark nights can pose to feline friends. The charity’s warning comes at the time of year when cats are most at risk of being involved in a car accident.

PDSA Vet Nurse Nina Downing said: “As we prepare for the dark winter nights as the clocks go back on Sunday morning, we want to make sure owners know the increased risks to cats as the nights draw in.

“Our teams treat more than 2,400 suspected road traffic accident related injuries every year.  It can cost up to £2,000 to treat a cat and £2,800 to treat a dog, which equates to potentially over a million pounds spent on saving precious pets’ lives who’ve been injured out on the roads.

“Cats are most at risk of being involved in a car accident in autumn but thankfully there are some things you can do to reduce their risk.”

PDSA advice for keeping cats safe on the road.

Consider only letting your cat out into a secure garden or safe outdoor area .Picture: Pixabay/MabelAmber

Some people keep their cats indoors to keep them safe from busy roads, Nina continued. “This might be a solution for some cats but
others enjoy going outdoors and may become stressed living solely indoors, which can impact their health and welfare.”

However, there are things you can do to help your outdoor cat stay safer around roads:

  1. Neuter your cats.
  2. They’ll be much less likely to roam in search of a mate or to get into fights with other cats.
  3. Keep cats indoors at night and let them out during daylight hours.
  4. Try feeding your cat as it starts to get dark. They’ll soon get used to this schedule and will come back home ready for the night.
  5. Reflective collars can help drivers see cats in the dark or in poor light.
  6. It is essential to choose a break-away style collar which will open if your cat catches it on a fence, branch or other object while they’re out exploring.
  7. If you live in a busy area with lots of traffic, consider only letting your cat out into a secure garden or safe outdoor area so they can’t wander onto the road. You can use specialist fencing or large cat aviaries.
  8. Consider pet insurance. If the worst does happen and your cat is involved in a road traffic accident, they could be very badly injured. Pet insurance will help to cover the cost of veterinary treatment so you can focus on your cat’s recovery without money worries.
  9. Get your cat microchipped. It will also be a legal requirement from June 2024. You’ll be more likely to be reunited with your cat if they go missing or to find out what’s happened to them if they’re in a road traffic accident.


Picture: Pixabay/Alexa

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