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5 Ways to Cat-Proof Your Christmas Tree

5 Ways to Cat-Proof Your Christmas Tree

For the first time in almost 20 years, there are cats living under my roof again. Actually, they are kittens. And they are eyeing the Christmas tree we brought home over the weekend with equal parts wide-eyed wonder and mischievous delight. To keep the peace and maintain my sanity I looked up a few tips on helping kitties and Christmas trees co-exist. Here are a few that have worked for us:

1. Choose your tree wisely. If you think your kitty is likely to climb and knock over the tree, pick a smaller tree this year that will cause less damage when toppled. Or you might want to settle for a small tabletop tree that can be closed off in another room when the cats are out and about.

2. Put up road blocks. Depending upon the size of your tree and your kitten you may be able to place obstacles around your tree that will keep kitty away. Remove chairs and tables that might serve as a launching pad to help your cat jump higher into the tree. And try wrapping the tree base with aluminum foil as most cats don’t like to dig their nails into this.

3. Spray some stink. There are a number of spray repellents you can use to keep cats away from your tree. We have been using Bitter Apple spray with some success. Other choices include citronella or citrus oils sprayed directly on the tree, or a diluted vinegar solution sprayed on the tree’s base.

4. Decorate judiciously. It won’t matter how much stink you spray on your tree, if it is covered with sparkly, dangly baubles, your cat will be hard-pressed to resist. Don’t hang any breakable or edible decorations on the lower half of the tree. And if possible, keep the lowest branches of the tree free from all ornaments and potential temptations. Skip the tinsel this year as cats will be far too tempted to eat it when it inevitably hits the ground.

5. Contain cords. Dangling electrical cords are an invitation for a kitty to play and bite. Tape cords to the wall from the outlet to the tree to keep them and your cat out of harm’s way. And remember to unplug lights when you are not at home.

Do you have any tips to share on cat-proofing your Christmas tree?

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Photo Credit:Sue McDonald/Shutterstock

Read more: Cats, Christmas, Holidays, Pets, Safety,

article by Jenn Savedge

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Kara, selected from Mother Nature Network

Mother Nature Network's mission is to help you improve your world. From covering the latest news on health, science, sustainable business practices and the latest trends in eco-friendly technology, MNN.com strives to give you the accurate, unbiased information you need to improve your world locally, globally, and personally all in a distinctive thoughtful, straightforward, and fun style.

292 comments

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11:54AM PST on Jan 17, 2014

my kitty did fairly well this year

10:31PM PST on Dec 27, 2013

Thanks for Sharing :)

3:08PM PST on Dec 26, 2013

Thanks for the info.

10:35AM PST on Dec 22, 2013

thanks for sharing

9:57AM PST on Dec 22, 2013

My cats are clearly my owners, I am their pet person. So why should I have a Christmas tree? hmmm....

5:23AM PST on Dec 22, 2013

When we used to get a tree we'd put rope half way up the trunk to make a two point tie to the walls. We never used tinsel or lights and the decorations couldn't be broken. The kittens loved climbing up and down the trunk.

1:50AM PST on Dec 22, 2013

Ta

5:08PM PST on Dec 21, 2013

Thank you.

5:07PM PST on Dec 21, 2013

Thank you.

4:35PM PST on Dec 21, 2013

db. ......... Good tip about the root, but the merchants are getting crafty too - many BOIL the root, so the tree dies off anyway ..... ensures they still have sales the following year !!!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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