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What Temperature for Pets is Best in the Fall?

Fall Pets

We're fortunate on the South Bay Peninsula and in Santa Cruz that we seldom have to worry about harsh fall and winter conditions, beyond the occasional freeze. Setting the thermostat between 68-78 degrees is fine for most of us, fall or any season. But what about the non-human creatures with whom so many of us share our homes? How do we know if we're programming the right temperature for pets?


For the most part, cats and dogs are quite alright with the 68-78 degree F temperatures we're likely to maintain throughout the year. Cats may prefer somewhat warmers temperatures on the chilly, dark days of fall, while dogs don't mind things to be a mite cooler. Dogs and cats both can keep warm by burrowing into their beds or blankets and curling up to save body heat. Sometimes with older animals, however, just as with older humans, you may have to provide a space heater to help the elderly dog or cat stay comfy.

If your pet seems particularly sensitive to chill or heat, you might want to check with the vet and ensure it is healthy, and also ask if your particular breed of animal might be more sensitive to heat or cold than others. For instance, Oriental breeds of cats, such as Siamese, generally like it a bit warmer than other felines. Huskies, not surprisingly, fare better when the air conditioner is set way down, while a Chihuahua will prefer things on the warm side.

For any breed, cat or dog, be mindful never to overheat them, be it in a stuffy house in winter, or one that isn't air conditioned in summer. Dogs and cats will show these symptoms when too hot:

  • heavy panting
  • bright red gums
  • lethargy
  • vomiting and diarrhea
  • seizures
  • coma

Pet birds, which mostly come from tropical climates, may need to be covered at night; reptiles may require a source of heat in their tanks.

For more on heating and A/C solutions and the best temperature for pets, contact Valley Heating, Cooling, Electricalof Silicon Valley.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the South Bay Peninsula and Santa Cruz areas of California about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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