7 Tips to Cat-Proof Your Holiday Decorations

The holidays are an exciting time for your cat. The decorations shimmer and shine and look incredibly fun to play with. A towering Christmas tree is a tempting toy for your feline friend. Here are seven tips to cat-proof your pet-friendly apartment as you decorate for the holiday season.

1. Choose the Right Tree

Artificial Christmas trees are safer for your cat. Needles on a real tree are sharp and can puncture its skin. Furthermore, pine needles can be toxic to cats if ingested. Of course, the materials used in artificial trees aren't ideal. Plan your decorations so that your cat will be less tempted to climb the tree, regardless of the type you purchase. For example, don't hang ornaments near the bottom of the tree. They will attract your cat.

Smaller is better in an apartment. Avoid buying a giant tree because it could cause more injury to your cat if it topples. Consider a table-top tree to dissuade your cat from climbing it altogether.

2. Place it in a Safe Spot

Keep the tree away from other climbable surfaces. Your cat may attempt to launch onto the tree from a nearby bookcase. A room with a door that can be closed is the best place to set up your Christmas tree. Be in the decked-out room when your cat is so that you can monitor it. Tell the cat "no" when it approaches your holiday decorations. Take the cat with you and close the door when you leave the room.

3. Secure the Base

A firm, solid base will help anchor the tree. You want the center of gravity to be low so that the tree won't fall if your cat climbs it. Hide the base with a tree skirt. Additionally, fix the tree to the ceiling or wall for more stability.

4. Decorate Without the Cat

Put your cat in another room while you are decorating your apartment. It may think that decorating is a game as you lay out and hang your ornaments.

5. Choose Decorations Wisely

Certain decorations are dangerous for your cat. Sharp tinsel, while attractive, can harm it. Artificial snow is toxic. These items should be left your of your holiday decorations. Choose objects that aren't as flashy so that you don't attract the attention of your cat. Pick plastic ornaments instead of glass. These are less likely to break if your cat starts pawing at them. Don't use food for decoration as your cat may attempt to eat it.

6. Don't Light Candles

Your cat could knock down candles as it meanders around the apartment, posing a major fire safety issue. Consider purchasing battery-powered imitation candles to use for your Christmas decorations.

8. Contain the Wires

Dangling electrical wires look like toys to cats. Use piping to case chords. Some wire containment tools allow you to mount the chords to the wall within a plastic tube. Unplug decorations when you aren't home.

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