Every year my friends regale me with tales of cats toppling Christmas trees, perching inside, eating tinsel and swatting decorations right off the branches. Many have confessed that they don’t know how to keep their feline friend our of the tree and no one wants a destroyed Christmas tree or worse a house fire during the holidays.
Each Holiday season there is an average of 240 Christmas Tree fires in the United States that result in about $16.7 million in property damage and about half of that is caused by faulty wiring in the lights and a big portion of THAT is caused by household pets chewing the wires.
Being cat owners ourselves, we here at Executive Edge have decided to offer up a few tips to help our fellow feline lovers keep their cats and their trees safe this Christmas.
Don’t Decorate Right Away
When you set up your christmas tree, be it real or fake, let your cat check it out for a day or two before you put all the pretty shiny things on it. Give your furry friend a chance to smell it and stare at it and plot its death. Not only is this adjustment period good for keeping your cat’s stress low (and gawd knows we don’t need no stressed out cats!) but it allows you to begin training your cat to look but not touch without there being anything too tempting dangling from it.
Anchor That Puppy to The Wall!
Not the real puppy..don’t do that! I mean the tree; anchor the tree – leave the dog alone.
There are a few ways to anchor your tree. You can put a hook in the ceiling and tie clear fishing wire from the hook to the tree, you can put hooks in the wall and tie the tree to the hooks or you could even screw the base to the floor.
Wrap it in Aluminum Foil
Aluminum foil is cat cryptonite. For cats that hate foil the solution is simple. Wrap the stand and trunk in aluminum foil. If you are really creative you can use foil as a tree skirt, just cover it with festive holiday mesh fabric and call it a day.
Bust Out The Oranges
As a general rule the scent of citrus is a deterrent – unless you own the Devil Cat and there’s lots of debates going on as to who actually does own the Devil cat. Spray your tree with citrus scented oils before decorating. You can also put orange peels in a pantyhose foot and place beneath the tree under the skirt. One clever lady on pinterest makes her own orange scented potpourri sache ornaments to hang all over her tree. There’s a thought.
Soda Can Projectiles
Now this by far my preferred method of keeping the cat out of the Christmas tree. This is how I trained my own fat cat to love the tree but not destroy it and to stay out of it. Get an empty soda can and wash it out. Let it completely dry inside (you don’t want it to get moldy) When it is completely dry inside put about 5 pennies inside. Cover the top with duct tape. Now comes the fun part. Wait for your cat to approach the tree. Watch carefully because timing is everything. If you wait until the cat is already in the tree you’ve missed the boat. When the cat gets up to the tree throw the soda can in the direction of the tree and the cat. Don’t hit the cat. People that hit the cat deserve to be hit back. The point is to scare the dickens out of the cat and make the cat think the tree is throwing the can.
NEVER let the cat see you with the can because if it does you are toast and the Devil Cat wins. You have to stay consistent with this method because cats are devious and they will test the flying projectile many times to see where it comes from. After several attempts your cat will either steer clear of the tree out of respect for the flying projectile or it will learn to just lay nearby it.
Unless of course you have a Devil Cat that isn’t the slightest bit deterred by any of these methods. In that case we suggest going the route our Agent, Xay Her went with the following:
Executive Edge Insurance Services
320 E Yosemite Ave Ste 101
Merced, Ca 95340