A Christmas tree can look like the ultimate toy to your pet: something to climb on that’s covered in shiny things to play with, break, and eat! Unfortunately, this dangerous situation is probably not what you had in mind when you set up your tree. Here’s some tips to make to keep your pets safe around your Christmas tree:
- Avoid putting ornaments low on the tree, and limit glass or breakable ones, so that your cat won’t be tempted or accidentally knock them off. Keep your heirloom ornaments near the top and well secured with hooks or fishing line.
- Avoid edible ornaments that may tempt your pet into climbing the tree to get them off.
- Pets may chew on electrical cords if they can reach them so keep them covered with plastic or cardboard tubes, start them higher on the tree, and unplug them when not in use.
- If you have a real tree sweep pine needles up frequently to avoid ingestion.
- Use a tree skirt to help cover your the water for your tree. This will help discourage your pets from using it as a water bowl. Tree water that’s treated with additives can make your pets sick – these additives usually have fertilizer, aspirin, and other ingredients harmful to your pets. And even if the water is not fertilized, it can accumulate bacteria that your pets shouldn’t drink. Some people will add aspirin to their tree’s water to keep it fresh longer but this can be toxic for your cats and dogs, so pet owners should avoid adding this to the tree’s water.
- Avoid using tinsel and other dangerous plants. Tinsel can seriously damage your pets digestive system. Plants like poinsettias, holly and mistletoe are poisonous to your pets.
- Many dogs and cats do not like citronella, this can be sprayed lightly to the lower branches and may deter curious dogs and cats.
Having a pet-friendly Christmas tree requires a few small, but simple changes. You can have a wonderful holiday display that will be safe for everyone in your household to enjoy. If you have any questions or concerns about pet safe decorating, please call us today at 804-642-5740 to set up an appointment.