It’s Christmas time! Time to trim the Christmas tree, but there are numerous steps to make sure all pets remain safe during the holiday season. Pet-proof your Christmas tree and enjoy this festive time of year.
Learn to Respect Boundaries
When a pet approaches the Christmas tree, they should be told no in a stern voice. Pets should be trained to respect boundaries and learn that climbing, sniffing, licking or chewing on the presents or tree is wrong.
When they listen, they should be given a reward such as a treat or an ear scratching. If pets won’t listen, place a gate around the tree, or use a crate to keep your furry friend away from the tree.
Don’t Decorate with Pets Around
Keep pets away while decorating the Christmas tree. Cats may attempt to pull the ornaments and decorations away before they can be hung, causing ornaments to break, or your cat might become entangled in wreaths and lights.
Familiarize Your Pet with the Tree
Let your pet a become familiar with the tree. Chances are they will play in the tree until curiosity has been satisfied, then your pet might become bored with the tree.
Sturdy Tree Stand
A solid Christmas tree stand is important, it should be solid and have a substantial weight. When a pet decides to climb the Christmas tree, the stand should prevent it from tipping over.
Secure Your Tree with a Fishing Line
Use a monofilament fishing line to secure the tree. Place the line around the tree, then screw it securely into the wall directly behind the tree. Another line can be tied towards the top of the tree, and secured into the ceiling with a molly.
Twinkling lights can be a danger to pets, they can become entangled within the cords, or receive a serious shock if they chew on them. Buy piping to cover the cords, all the way to the outlet to ensure they won’t get shocked.
Secure Cords with Duct Tape
Fasten the cords to the floor with duct tape, this will secure the cords and keep them away from the pets.
Don’t Use Fertilizer
Cover the water bowl for the tree with a tree skirt, this will prevent the pets from drinking the tree water. Some pets can be incredibly persistent and will manage to move the skirt anyway. For this reason, do not use any type of fertilizer in the water.
Hang Ornaments up Top
Low hanging ornaments may attract the attention of the pets, or be knocked off by a happily wagging tail. Make sure your ornaments are securely fastened to the tree to prevent them from accidentally falling. Place fragile ornaments close to the top. Remember, broken glass presents a definite threat for all pets. All ornaments near the base of the tree should not be breakable.
Although most people think tinsel is gorgeous on a tree; it is a bad idea for pets. Not only can a pet choke on a piece of tinsel, but if eaten, it can entangle in the pet’s intestines. Remember to leave the tinsel off the tree for your pet’s safety.
Keep Presents Out of Reach
Pets are attracted to bright paper and colorful ribbons and bows. If a pet swallows any of these items, it presents a serious threat. Keep presents in a place that pets are unable to access.
Ornaments Are Not a Toy
Do not play with or tease a cat with any decorations or ornaments. This will make the cat believe the decorations are shiny new toys and they will want to play with the glittery decorations.
Bland is Better
Many cats will find sparkly, dangling, shimmering and glowing ornaments irresistibly attractive. Choose plain ornaments made from material, paper or felt they will not be as attractive to pets.
No Glass Ornaments
Use shatter-proof ornaments or bulbs. The wire should be twisted around the branch, and not simply left hanging from the hook. This will help prevent the ornaments from being dislodge