It’s November, it’s after Bonfire Night, it’s official - Christmas is here! The ads are invading our airwaves and stores are swapping their typical pop filled playlists in favour of seasonal songs on loop.
Despite this time of year being synonymous with joy and good cheer, anyone with a slightly mischievous feline friend may be a tad trepidatious in the face of the oncoming holidays. You spend hours meticulously decorating your tree, draping it in twinkling lights and anything that glitters. You turn your back for a second, and you hear a heart-breaking crash.
That’s right – your moggy has done you the favour of inspecting your poor tree for intruders, and in the process has ensured your baubles are now evenly distributed across the carpet. Nightmare!
So – with this in mind - how exactly do you teach kitty that this is one tree they shouldn’t attempt to scale? Aside from basic training, there are a few ways you can keep your house-panther from redecorating the floor. As Apartment Therapy informs us, there are ways you can completely cat-proof your Christmas.
One option requires a little bit of DIY. Mark a spot on the ceiling directly above where your tree will be placed and screw in a small loop or hook. You can purchase hooks and loops from any hardware store reasonably cheaply.
Once this is positioned, use either strong nylon thread or fishing wire - fastening one end to the top of your tree and the other to your hook - to secure your conifer, preventing it from tipping over.
A tip you may want to try if you have hard surface floors is to consider using duct tape. This economically-friendly solution requires you to apply the silvery tape to the feet of your tree and onto the floor itself. If this risks clashing with your carefully-curated colour scheme, you can easily cover the feet as you would normally with a tree skirt - or a few extra presents!
You will want to make sure you can remove the duct tape without damaging your floor, so try this out on a discreet patch first. Removal is fairly easy - simply leave a damp cloth on top of the tape for a while before gently peeling it away.
An economical and ecological solution, believe it or not, is oranges. Cats are known to hate the smell of citrus fruit, though you won’t harm your pet by putting them to good use. Therefore, leaving a few pieces of peel in a bowl beneath your tree, or spraying the lower limbs with a diluted solution of citronella or orange oil, will leave your tree smelling lovely and fresh to you - but highly repellent to your cat.
Naturally, accidents do happen from time to time - so to minimise damage, it may be worth avoiding using glass ornaments and lights as they may shatter and cause injury to you or your pets. It’s also worth avoiding tinsel! The shimmery garland proves irresistible to most felines who, if they don’t shred it and spread it around your house, may try chewing it. This can lead to choking or digestive problems. You may also wish to avoid small decorations and edible pieces for similar reasons. Decorations and tress can be tantalising to cats – but they can also cause harm.
Christmas is a wonderful time of year for millions of people and their pets. However, don’t let it become a playground full of twinkly hazards for your cat! Do you have any other tips and tricks of your own for helping to avoid Christmas cat-related chaos? Let us know your thoughts and comments!