© squirrelrehabilitation.com, 2011 The Basics Heat Sources  Heating Pads  The best heat source, other than the mother herself, is an electric heating pad set on LOW.   The objective is to provide the baby with a heat source that is consistent and most accurately  matches the baby’s necessary body temperature (98-102 degrees Fahrenheit).  Heating pads can be obtained at any chain drug store or department store.  You want to  make certain that you purchase a pad that DOES NOT have an automatic shut-off feature.   Fortunately, these are the least expensive. When using a heating pad, it is very important to  place only about half of the container the baby is in on the pad so the baby can crawl away  from the heat if it gets too warm.  Heating pads have been known to malfunction.   Disposable Heating Pads   Disposable heating pads can be found at most sporting goods stores and some chain   drug stores and department stores.  The one pictured claims to provide heat for up to   thirty-six hours.  Unfortunately, temperature is not adjustable with these, and some can   vary quite a bit as to how hot they get.  Therefore, great care must be taken to monitor   the heat, and as with the electric heating pad, the baby must be provided with an area   to remove itself from the heat.   Plastic Bags/Bottles/Hot Water Bottles   Plastic bags/bottles filled with very warm (but not scalding hot) water, wrapped in cloth   can be used as heat sources.  If bags are used, use freezer, not sandwich, bags as these   less likely to rupture or leak.  It is advisable to double the bags (bag inside a bag).  The   obvious disadvantage to these is that they must be changed out frequently.   Rice Buddy   A Rice Buddy can be made by simply filling an old sock with rice and microwaving it for   two or so minutes.  They hold heat well but should also be checked often and reheated   when necessary.   Lightbulbs/Lamps   Using lightbulbs/lamps is generally not recommended.  If one is used, however, it should   NOT be a heat lamp bulb but a low-wattage (40 watt incandescent or 10-13 watt CFL)   bulb, and it should NEVER BE PLACED OVER THE CONTAINER/BABY.  If a bulb is used,   it should be placed under one end of the container (the container cribbed up off the table   surface with books) or positioned at one end of the container.  As with all heat sources,   but particularly with bulbs, the baby MUST be provided with the means to crawl away from   the heat, and the temperature should be monitored frequently and adjustments to how   close the lamp is to the container made as needed.     Other Heat Sources   Whatever heat source is used, it can’t be emphasize enough that the baby and the temperature should be checked often.   People have used their computer towers, steam radiators (set on low), and so on to keep their babies warm.  While   many have been successful, many others have killed their babies by either allowing them to get cold or by over-heating   them.