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leasmom 11-01-2003 03:41 PM

Help, 3 cats and a X-mas Tree!!!
I can't let my cats outside in this new area. When I was living in Tennessee, I figured a way of saving my X-mas tree from destruction from my then 2 cats... so I came up with getting them acculamated to the weather long, long before X-mas, so I only let them in for a while when I could watch them at X-mas, which was perfectly fine with them, they loved going outside and even created their own 'house' out of a hole in the basement, so I would go out to their house and call them to come into the bigger house. Oh by the way, it wasn't cold but for about 2 wks in Tennesse...we wore our thin jackets until X-mas when we were hit with cold weather, but other than that, it was very mild...we're now in Colarado and it is getting cold!!!

This year, I have one of the original two cats and her kitten-(she's now fixed and another cat I recently took in because I thought she was pregnant-(which I'll let the vet tell me if she is or not)-I don't have plans to keep her but my dd has become very attached and vice versa!!!). that I have 3 cats, what in the world will I do? I usually put up my tree the day after Thanksgiving, but I don't know if I can do that this year until December. But, I can't let them outside, we now live in Colorado in a very fast main street and two of my neighbor's cats have been killed. How can I save my tree from destruction and remove the cats from the situation???

pam333 11-08-2003 07:16 AM

cats and Christmas trees
Hi fellow cat-lover. I have always had cats and/or kittens and live in very cold climate. I wouldn't think of making them stay outside for any reason. It can be a problem with Christmas trees, of course. Especially with kittens. My adult cats have usually not been much of a problem. Here's how I handle it. First I make sure the tree is tied securely to the wall, if possible. A dark twine or yarn,tied on to tree about 3/4 up. One line going to each side. (The twine and the tree make a triangle.) Then I just don't put any ornaments on the bottom one or two branches. It's really not that noticeable and the cats don't seem to notice the higher ornaments. If there are any special breakable things, then don't put them on this year - just in case. If you could keep the cats in a closed room overnight (or the tree room closed) this would help. Cats often do most mischief at night.Pam (65 yrs experience with cats). Feel free to ask me questions.

fish3711 11-08-2003 07:57 AM

cats and trees
Hi, I agree with Pam. The first year that I spent with my new husband we got a 9 ft tree. I tried to tell him we needed to tie it off to the wall. (having grown up with animals we always did this as kids. I think my Dad did it because of the pets and because he had 7 kids who kept playing with the ornaments). My new hubby didn't listen and 5 mins after we spent 5 hours w/the kids decorating the tree, the cat climbed it and sent it to the ground. Luckily it landed on carpet, but almost every ornament was destroyed, and so was the tree stand! We spent from 2am till about 8am cleaning the mess and sneaking out to the all night walmart to buy new ornaments before my kids woke up and noticed. The funny thing is they woke up and never knew, they were like I hung this ornament and so on and we couldn't believe they didnt realize that there was all new ornaments! The moral of the story is that the tree should have been tied off to the wall. I am lucky I have cathedral ceilings and a plant shelf so we put eye hooks up there and hitch the tree up and it isn't real noticable. Since that time the cat hasn't bothered the tree, its been 5 years. I imagine a 9ft tree toppling over on her scared her enough to know to leave the tree alone. I think this year it will be my new dog who will probably pee on it a lot. We also do not put ornaments on the very bottom branches. (we have tile floors now and from experience with pets and kids they tend to fall off and break). I am sure things will go smoothly if you tie it off and keep the ornaments from the very bottom branches. Good luck and happy holidays!

lindaljh1 11-08-2003 08:53 AM

I love kittens and small children!^^ We have always placed bells on the bottom branches of our tree to warn us if a child or kitten got too close. Some years we have placed a toddler fence, decorated with a plastic garland, around the Christmas tree to keep the toddlers safe and the presents unopened.

Three years ago we had both toddlers and kittens in our house and I was a basket case! Our kittens were being trained to not climb the curtians and I knew the tree would be irristable!

We went to Wallmart and bought a fiber optic Christmas tree. It is not heavy, and it can be touched safely. The older children made paper ornaments and we placed some of our unbrakeable ornaments on the tree.

It fell over a few times before the kittens learned to leave it alone. No babies were crushed, no ornaments were broken and the children loved touching the tree. We have decided that this is the perfect tree to use for the next 7 years.

When they are older we will go out and chop down a big green Christmas tree and carefully place all of my my pretty glass ornaments on it. Until then I'll remember that Christmas is for all of us, even toddlers and kittens.

Love & Prayers,

Deb Bryan 11-08-2003 10:16 AM

We have also had the same problems with our 3 fur babies!! Last year we used an artificial tree because they seemed to want to drink the water out of the Christmas tree stand, even though they had a nice full waterdish!! We also tied the artifical tree to the wall and left the last few bottom branches undecorated. I also do not use the sparkly tinsel or anything that may harm the kitties if they DO get into the tree. Ours are also indoor only because of the proximity to the busy road. They have adjusted pretty well to not going outdoors. I used a kitty halter and leash for one of my cats(only one would tolerate it) and walked him outside when it wasn't too cold. He is gone now, and the 3 we have now rarely show any inyterest in the outside.

Robin whittington 11-08-2003 10:50 AM

:cat: You don't say in your post why you think it will be a problem.
I assume that they have possibly climbed it or attacked the orniments on a previous date?
First don't hang any dangling things low. Second cats don't like sticky things.... try using double sided tape under and around the tree.....or hang small pieces on the bottom. Another train of thought would buy inexpensive non breakable orniments and secure the tree well and don't worry about it. Buy a small real tree. You can also try providing things like small logs or firewood for them to sharpen claws on. It's usualy the curiosity and the new adventure that gets cats into trouble... I find that keeping my birds out of the tree is harder than the cats but we put it up so that it serves the purpose and is pleasing to the eye but if a cat or a bird lands in it it's not going to be a total loss.
Good Luck!
Robin in NC

leasmom 11-08-2003 11:11 AM

Oh, sorry, I didn't explain...
I have 2 cats now, since I found the other one a home. She wasn't pregnant...

Well, my female cat, Chili is curious, and I let her and her mother Spicy out last year, like I said it wasn't cold until X-mas day in Tennessee. Her mother Spicy-(who died)-knocked down my tree a few times a couple years before. Now, Chili's kitten Paprika...well, he knocks down everything and jumps on top of the fridge to get bread, he doesn't give up for nothing and no swatting, diverting his attention etc. works on him...just try eating in front of him and see how many various ways he tries to get to the food, including jumping on you!

So, I know that not only would he be knocking down all the ornaments, chewing on the wires, but he would be up in the tree and would be sleeping up there! He is my little troublemaker! I always buy artificial but I can just see it now...

I am involved in a Christmas Ornament Exchange on this board and I would not want to waste my money or that of others and time in putting up a tree that he will attack! I can't even tie my shoes without the both of them trying to attack it! So, I have to remove them both from the situation.

I did get a child safety gate from my neighbor that seriously needs to be scrubbed down, I do have a nice large closest that is in the dining room, where they're litter and water is, it's also the place where Chili had her kittens. It's big enough for them to eat, sleep, and play in. I am going to put the gate up in there so they can still be apart of everything but aren't in everything, like a cat playpen. I still need to work out some kinks because there's a large triangle of the doorway that won't be covered by the gate, so gotta figure that out. But, this is my only solution unless I buy a cat playpen. Oh, and I would let them out when I could watch them, but I think that's my only solution because my dd would not be very happy that she was the only kid without a tree and I wouldn't be happy with the cats using the tree as a giant playstaton-LOL!!!

Coll 11-08-2003 12:53 PM

HELP! 3 cats and a christmas tree
Hi.I had this dilemma last year when I got my new kitten. What we did was take a couple pairs of knee hi nylons and place 3 or 4 moth balls into each one and tie them shut. Hang them among the lower branches of the tree. Your cats will not like the smell and will avoid the tree.

Robin whittington 11-08-2003 01:18 PM

:daisy: Just a word of warning and caution.... mothballs are very toxic..... to you and your cats!
Robin in NC

loungelizzard 11-08-2003 02:51 PM

cats and christmas trees
This may not sound very nice but it worked with my cats. I got a squirt gun and when they started to mess with the tree i gave them a squirt. After being sprayed with water a few times they never messed with the tree again. :cat:

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