The Long Hot Winter is the fifteenth episode of Top Cat.
When Top Cat hears that Officer Dibble's wife has gone to Florida for the winter, he thinks he can get Dibble to let the cats stay with him. The gang heads to the public library so TC can study some law books. Finding what he needs, he marches the gang back to the alley as prisoners.
He tells Dibble he made a citizens' arrest, since it is illegal to reside on municipal property, and turns himself in too. Dibble is suspicious, but brings them before the captain, who says they can't live in the alley anymore. TC tricks the cops into agreeing to let them stay with Dibble for the night.
The cats fall asleep in his bed, so Dibble sleeps in his chair. Benny wakes him up to ask for a glass of water, but Dibble yells at him to get back in bed. Later, Dibble's snoring wakes TC so he tells Brain and Choo-Choo to push him into the closet. They can still hear the snoring, so they put him out on the fire escape. When he wakes up because of the cold, he takes a tumble to the sidewalk. Furious, he throws the cats out.
TC uses the police phone to call Strife magazine and tells them about a policeman who befriended the needy, saying they can get all the details from the captain. They want to run a feature story with pictures. The captain agrees and tells Dibble, who must invite the cats back. TC pretends he's not interested until Dibble practically begs and offers free food.
The photographer comes and goes, but the cats stay. The months roll by until Spring arrives, and the gang moves back to the alley. Dibble thinks he'll bust them for residing on municipal property, but TC shows him in the law book that that law was actually repealed in 1936. Dibble cries because he's a failure, so TC lets him arrest him for the overdue library book.
- The title is a play on the 1958 film, The Long Hot Summer.