Brown and black cat in a Christmas tree with text "So This is Christmas - With a Cat"

Sparkling lights, glittery ornaments, shiny strips of tinsel, Christmas trees are irresistible to most cats. Cats love to explore and may be attracted to the smells of the holiday meal cooking or scared by the sounds of parties and unaccustomed house guest. Kittens and young cats are at the greatest risk of injury due to holiday decorations. Senior cats are more prone to stress-induced illness when there is so much festive chaos going on in the home.

Here are a few tips to help keep kitty safe from the dangers of holidays.

• Beware of tree water; it may contain pesticides fertilizer and even aspirin. Drinking this water can cause poisoning in cats. Use aluminum foil to cover the tree bowl to prevent drinking.

• Ribbons and tinsel are irresistible and it’s only natural for your cat to want to play with them. If ingested, it could require surgery to remove the items from Kitty’s tummy.

• Holiday plants such as Poinsettias are known for their toxicity to cats. However, they only have mild toxicity. Holly and mistletoe are more dangerous, and amaryllis are especially dangerous.

• Keep candles out of reach of cats.

• To cats, extension cords and string lights look like another play thing. If cats try to chew on these, they could end up getting burned or electrocuted.

It may seem like the holiday celebrations and cats don’t mix, but as long as proper precautions are taken, there’s no better combination. Safe holiday decorations can mean the difference between enjoying Christmas with the family or visiting the vet’s office.

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