Catproofing Your Christmas Tree

The holiday season is upon us! All over the country, people are starting to put up decorations. We have a sneaking suspicion that some of our feline patients are already eyeing their humans’ holiday trees. As far as Fluffy is concerned, a tree is a giant scratching post hung with cat toys! Here, a Mt. Airy, MD vet discusses catproofing your tree.

Decorate Wisely

Keep your furry friend in mind when hanging ornaments. Decorate the bottom part of the tree sparsely, with things that won’t break if your kitty successfully knocks them down. Put the fragile ornaments on the top part of the tree.

Secure The Tree

Be sure to get a sturdy base for your tree. You may also want to secure the top of the tree to the wall or ceiling with fishing line. It won’t show, but it will provide some extra support.

Bribe The Furball

Telling your cat to stay out of the tree probably won’t do much good. However, you may want to consider giving Fluffy some of her holiday gifts a bit early. If your kitty is busy playing with her new catnip mice, or has a fun new cat tower to climb, she may not bother with the tree. It may also help to tire your feline buddy out with a fun play session. If your cat is worn out, she’ll be more interested in napping under the tree than knocking it over!


Don’t put your tree next to a sofa, chair, desk, or table that Fluffy could use to jump off of. A corner may be a good bet.

Go Artificial

While Fluffy can easily climb real trees, artificial ones are much tougher for her to scale. Consider getting a fake tree. (Bonus: you can use it again next year!)


Keep in mind that holiday trees can be dangerous to cats. Ornament hooks, pine needles, tinsel, ribbon, light strands, and fragile ornaments are all hazardous to frisky kitties. Be sure to pick up any fallen hooks, tinsel, or ornaments. The tree water can also be dangerous, as it may contain residues from pesticides and other toxic chemicals. Consider putting a baby gate around the tree to keep Fluffy away from it.

Seasons Greetings! Please reach out to us if ever we can be of assistance. As your Mt. Airy, MD vet clinic, we’re here to help!

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