Surely, one of the things that are most appealing to cats, in addition to their independent personality, is the beauty of the coat and the multiple color combinations, which makes each cat unique thanks to each speck and each line.
When you see them leaning towards the sun, or in very hot times, it is usual to wonder how they can withstand the high climatic temperatures with all that hair covering them, and more one will have questioned if they have any way to sweat.
That’s why this time in we explain how this mechanism works in your pet, because we know that in more than one occasion, faced with the high temperatures that make humans suffer, you have asked yourself How do cats sweat?
Feline sweat glands
First, clarify that, in effect, the cats do sweat, although they do it to a lesser extent than human beings. Maybe I’m surprised to know this, because at no time have you seen your feline covered in anything similar to sweat, much less considering that it is wrapped in a layer of hair.
The sweat glands of the cat are scarce, and are concentrated in only specific points of your body, contrary to the human, which has them on the entire surface of the skin. As you know, the body generates sweat to release the heat it feels and at the same time refresh the skin.
In the cat the mechanism works the same, but sweats only through some very specific areas: the pads of their legs, the chin, the anus and the lips.
The coat of the feline can hold a temperature of up to 50 degrees centigrade without suffering any damage, although it does not mean that the animal does not feel heat. They simply have other mechanisms to relieve the sensation.
In the same way, it is necessary to have presents that the cat not only sweats when the temperatures increase, but this is also his way of reacting to certain situations that produce stress, fear and nervousness. In these cases, the cat leaves a trail of sweat from its pads, which emits a sweet smell that humans are able to perceive.
How cool is the cat?
Despite having the aforementioned sweat glands, these are not usually enough to cool the animal in hot weather, especially if you consider that the coat does not contribute much to keeping it cool.
Therefore, the cat has developed other mechanisms to release heat and maintain a stable temperature in summer, so it is very common that in days too dry you observe them doing these things:
First, the grooming frequency increases. The cat licks its entire body, and the saliva that remains on the fur evaporates, helping the body to cool.
Also, on warm days you will avoid any unnecessary effort, so you will be much more inactive than at other times, so it is usual to find him napping with his body stretched in a ventilated and shaded place.
Similarly, drink more water and want to play less, to try to stay cool. You could add an ice cube in your water container so it stays cool longer.
Another way you use to refresh your body is panting, although you should be careful because this mechanism is more usual in dogs, because they perform more physical activity.
How does panting work? When the cat is panting, the inner thorax, part of the body that is warmer, expels the heat by means of the humidity that occurs in the mucous membranes of the throat, tongue and mouth. Thus, the cat can exhale this air that is expelled from his body and take advantage of the steam to cool off.
However, the method panting is not common in cats, so if yours does then it means that you are feeling an excessive amount of heat, and you should help it in the following way:
- Moisten your coat with cold water, wetting the area of the armpits, groin and neck.
- Wet your lips with fresh water and let him drink on his own if he wants to.
- Take it to a more ventilated place; If you can place it near a fan or air conditioning, much better.
- Consult your veterinarian immediately.
Why should you take these measures? If even after following the steps described above your cat continues to pant, you should contact your veterinarian, it is very likely that the cat is suffering a heat stroke due to high temperatures, a condition that could kill him if you do not act quickly.
Why does heat stroke occur? At high temperatures, the brain tells the body of the cat to release body heat, so the process of sweating begins, during which the blood vessels of the skin dilate to allow the expulsion of heat.
However, when this process fails, or if this or any of the other mechanisms to which the cat resorts are sufficient, then the body overheats and is exposed to heat stroke, whose consequences could be lethal.
If you want to read more articles similar to How do cats sweat?, we recommend that you enter in our Curiosities section of the animal world.