Cats have an incredible sense of hearing thanks to their superb ears which can allow them to hear frequencies three times higher than that of humans, however also similar to humans they use their ears for other purposes including regulating their body temperature.
A cat's ears can therefore be a good indicator of how healthy a cat is and if it has picked up any illnesses which will in turn affect its body temperature, so it’s never a bad idea to lightly touch your cat's ears to see how they are feeling and is why it's always important for any owner to know what their cats ear temperature means for their overall health.
If you find that your cat's ears are a little warmer than usual, here is everything you need to know and if you should be alarmed.
What Does It Mean If My Cat Has Warm Ears?
A cat's ear temperature will adjust to their surroundings, as well as how active they are in that environment.
For example if they are running around and exercising in the sun or even lounging around by a windowsill as the heat shines down, it is very normal for their ears to get warm or even hot.
Therefore, if you find that your cat's ears are a little warm, this is nothing to worry about and simply means that their body is adjusting to the temperature around them.
It is also important to remember that a cat's natural body temperature is several degrees hotter than a humans so while this warmth may feel a little odd to the human touch, to cats it is perfectly suited to their body.
Should I Cool My Cat Down If It Has Warm Ears?
Majority of the time your cat will be completely healthy when they have warm ears and simply means that they are just adjusting their body temperature to their surroundings, however if you do want to cool them down a bit just in case they get a little too hot the go-to solution is to provide a good amount of ventilation near their usual resting spot.
Even if they go to do some exercise in the garden, a cat will almost always return to its favorite spot so keeping this area cool with a few bowls of water around is guaranteed to keep them chilled out.
Can Warm Ears Mean That A Cat Is Ill?
If you find that your cat has warm ears then it is not a sign of concern especially if they are as energetic or lazy as they usually are and are not acting anxious or irritable.
If however you find that your cat's ears are quite hot and that they also have a few other symptoms of having an illness, it can indicate that they may be sick. These symptoms include:
If you are really worried that your cat's ears are too hot or if they seem a little too warm despite the environment and temperature being a bit colder or mild, check the cat's stomach and underarms first.
If these feel hot too, then this can be a sign that the cat has a fever since they will experience this throughout the entire body.
Additionally, rather than checking the temperature of your cat's ears, a clearer way to tell if they are ill is not by checking the temperature but by either looking in the ear or paying attention to how much your cat is scratching them.
Otitis externa is a common infection of the outer ear that many cats can pick up as they grow older, however they could also simply have ear mites or a yeast infection.
If a cat does have an ear infection of some kind they will often rub the ear much more than normal which can make it red but also quite hot, so if you notice your cat is doing this a lot it could be a good idea to just get them checked by a vet to make sure they are healthy.
Other Reasons A Cat Might Have Warm Ears
The bottom line is that if you find that your cats ears a little on the warmer side, this is not a huge cause for concern and is completely normal especially when the temperatures are a lot higher outside or even in the house, however there are a few other reasons that are a bit more rare for why a cat's ears could heat up.
One is that they are experiencing sunstroke which can lead to them constantly panting to try and regulate their temperature.
As humans, we have sweat glands in almost every part of our body making it easy to cool down when the warm weather arrives, however cat’s only have a few of these glands in their feet and nose, as well as having big coats of fur which can make them quite susceptible to sunstroke.
The best way to cool your cat down if they might be experiencing sunstroke is to keep them in a well ventilated area of the house and provide easy access to drinking water.
Warm or hot ears can also be the sign of an allergy especially if the ears have a red appearance.
Unlike us humans who will cough and sneeze when responding to an allergy, cats will instead have parts of their appearance change and redden and this is especially the case with their ears.
Common cat allergens that can lead to red hot ears include fleas, a food in their diet or even simply dust or particles, so as soon as you notice what the allergy is, keep it as far from your feline companion as possible.
Warm ears are nothing to be worried about when it comes to cats, just make sure the ears themselves are not red and that your cat doesn’t have any other symptoms alongside them as this could indicate they might have a fever or infection.
At Love4Cats, our practice involves consistent collaboration with licensed veterinarians and reputable industry experts. However, it's important to note that the content provided on Excited Cats is not intended as veterinary advice. While we strive to enhance your understanding of feline care, the information presented on this blog should not replace professional veterinary guidance.