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Cats and Christmas Trees

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
This will be our first Christmas with our cats and I've heard horror stories about cats and Christmas trees.

Is it something I really have to worry about? Will they try to climb into it and play with the decorations and eat the wires (think Christmas Vacation!)?

I would just like to hear some other people's experiences with this situation and what I may have to look forward to.
post #2 of 11
Hello again,

Ok, I personnally would go for a fibre optic fake tree, as there is no wires around the tree and they can get aload of pins in their feet as it is not real.

Last year was my frst year with a cat, and Ziggy went mental. I would come in to find the tree knocked over and smashed decorations!!! This year I will be putting VERY HEAVY rocks around the bottom of the tree to hold it in place, (my son didn't help the situation either last year, he was a walking/running one year old ) Dont et galss decorations, use plastic, they will play, but if they can't knock if over it should be fine, you just might need to do some rearranging here and there.
post #3 of 11
We have had our tree up for a week (I know we're nuts), I was a little worried because Jack is a curious 13 week old kitten. He is doing great. He did try and eat the wires but has stopped that. The only thing he really does it scratch on the trunk (fake tree). We are letting him because its better than the sofa. We are still debating whether to put on ornaments.

Good luck

post #4 of 11
Not to hijack the thread, but I was wondering if anyone knew where to get pet-safe tree stands? We want a real tree this year (this is my boyfriends, my and peanuts first christmas all together... we bought a charlie brown tree from Urban Outfitters last year) and I'm concerned about pesticides, fertilizers, whatever they might have used on the trees getting into the water, then peanut drinking the water and getting sick.

My family always had fake trees that my dad used fishing line tied to the base, half way up, these two lines attached to the wall, then another line from the top of the tree attaching it to the ceiling, so this idea might help some of you.
post #5 of 11
When I had a lot of cats, we nailed the tree to the floor. That gives you an idea.

After all, look at from the cat's point of view. They climb trees. We bring a tree into the house and then hang toys on it.

And we expect them to leave it alone?

As we say in Brooklyn, Yeah, right!

The younger and/or more lively they are, the more likely they are to explore it, especially if it is new to them. My suggestions:

  • secure the tree with sandbags or some kind of anchor
  • fasten the ornaments securely
  • bind up the wires around the base so they won't look so tempting, and coat them with Bitter Apple or citrus spray so they won't chew
  • leave some soft "low hanging fruit" ornaments that will tempt them first and you don't mind them playing with. Sometimes they are satisfied with that, and after all, it's Christmas for them, too!

  • use tinsel AT ALL. Cats can eat it and cause terrible bowl obstructions.
  • indulge in the delicate ornaments that would upset you in case they break. Display them in a safe place if they mean Christmas to you, but don't tempt fate.
  • wrap their presents and put them under the tree if they contain catnip. This is a sure way of getting presents opened before Christmas, and they might start on everyone else's, just in case.
  • use bows on presents if the cat likes bows, because they will think the bows are for them. Some cats are indifferent to ribbon wrapped around presents, and some cats can't wait to peel it off. Try some "test gifts" to see which cat you have, and wrap in a way that will not invite destruction.

You can wrap gifts with cats present, depending on the cats. Sometimes you can stick a bit of tape on their paw, and they will be busy taking it off (I put it on my palm or the carpet first, to make it less sticky,) or you can ball up some scrap wrapping paper and let them chase it around, and you can all enjoy this special task of the season. But if the cat is making connect the dots with the laid out paper and playing with the scissors, you need to remove them from the premises to get the job done safely. Often, cats will leave wrapped presents alone. They find the task of wrapping the presents far more fascinating because of its crafty aspects.
post #6 of 11
i myself am worried about this this year. max is quite the rowdy thing and i fear for the tree. we use a fake tree because i'm very very allergic to real ones. but all those "little toys", lol, that wearbear pointed out that we hang on the tree, i fear for those. we will just take it as it comes. our 8 year old never cared about the tree even as a baby. i think of all the cats we had, only one wanted to climb the tree, but it was a real one way back when. max is the most unique cat we have ever had so we are preparing for the worst, lol. we already put huge rocks on the stand to help hold it in place, perhaps this year i will get bigger rocks, lol.
post #7 of 11
I gave up Christmas trees about 15 years ago. We buy a tree to plant that is balled/burlaped, hang dried fruit on it for the birds for decorations then plant it after Christmas.
post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your suggestions!

I think I would only have to worry about Noddy. He's 1 1/2 yrs. old and he's the one who likes to climb. I have some boxes out in the conservatory and the second day we had him, he decided he was going to jump on the boxes and jump up to the ledge against the wall. I panicked because I thought he wasn't able to get down. Now he goes up there all the time. He also has a tendency to chew on the edges/corners of boxes and also on the squared edge of the cat tree.

I just remembered that wires don't seem to phase either of them so that shouldn't be a problem, but I'd still wrap them up so they couldn't get to them.

Wrapping gifts with them around shouldn't be a problem either as I would be doing that at the dining room table and they are not allowed up there. (I know some people allow their cats to jump on anything and everything, but I don't feel that a table or kitchen counters, where food is, should be a place for the cats to walk all over).

We don't plan on getting a very large tree, due to lack of room, so we shall see how it goes.

Thank you again!
post #9 of 11
I realize this isn't always practical, but FWIW, my cat will be gated off from the Christmas tree.
post #10 of 11
every year the tree is to cats a HUGE TOY!1 what i do i spray cat away its stuff u can buy to deter them from scratching funiture) i spary it on my tree skirt and the area and so some of my decorations are saved .....
post #11 of 11
Blinking lights, esp. changing patterns,always scared my cats away from the tree.
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