Decorating for the holidays can be a fun and festive tradition, but any cat owner can tell you that a Christmas tree can mean trouble with a curious feline in the house. Below are five tips to help keep your kitty safe and that Christmas tree standing upright:
1. Wrap aluminum foil around the trunk: Cats don’t like the feeling of foil, so wrapping foil around the base will help discourage climbing.
2. Remove the lower branches: Cats are agile climbers and can usually scale a Christmas tree without a problem, but removing the lower branches will make the task a little more difficult. Cutting off the lower branches will also keep you from having low-hanging ornaments at your kitty’s eye level.
3. Toss the tinsel: Cats are attracted to tinsel because it looks like a shiny piece of string to play with, but if ingested, this popular decoration can be deadly. Tinsel can cause a severe linear foreign body obstruction in cats, resulting in damage to the intestinal track or rupturing of the intestines. Keep your cat safe by leaving tinsel off the tree.
4. Choose ornaments wisely: Choosing non-breakable ornaments is a smart idea with a cat in the house so that if curious paws do find your Christmas tree, you won’t have a big mess to clean up.
5. Control the cords: Lights are a staple of any Christmas tree, but they’re also a hazard for your cat. Streamline the cords and tape them to the wall behind the tree. To keep pets safe, always unplug your lights when you’re not home.