It’s that time of year again! As we celebrate the joys of the holiday season, your cats may be excited too. Those shiny, glittering decorations and lighted candles sure do look tempting to inquisitive and playful felines. But they can be extremely hazardous to their health and to your home, and there are precautions you should take to keep cats safe during the holidays.
That’s why Alley Cat Allies has created tips to help keep your felines healthy and stress-free during the festivities. We’re also excited to debut our new Cat Holiday Safety quiz to test your knowledge!
Check out our holiday safety tips for cats and keep everyone safe during the holidays.
- Set up a cat-proof Christmas tree. Christmas trees look like a lot of fun to cats, who have been known to climb them and try to play with the dangling ornaments and shiny lights. Keep your tree and your cats safe by securing the tree to the wall (hooks and fishing line work well). Hang ornaments up high where cats can’t get them. Avoid tinsel altogethercats are at risk if they ingest it. If you have a live tree, don’t put fertilizer in the water in case your cats drink it.
- Securely tape down holiday lights. Or put them completely out of paws’ reach so your cats can’t play with them.
- Supervise your cat around candles. Or better yet, use fake ones instead. Cats can burn themselves on the open flame or knock candles over.
- Decorate with fake plants, instead of the real thing. This is another way to make sure you have cat-friendly Christmas decorations. Poinsettias, holly, mistletoe, and fir trees are all holiday staples, but can cause nausea or vomiting in cats if ingested.
- Don’t feed your cat your leftovers. It might be tempting to give your cat a special snack for the holidays, but human food can be harmful for her, so stick to cat treats.
- Ribbons can be harmful for cats if swallowed. If your cat is interested in your gift wrappings, give her a boxyou know she’ll love it!
- Put your cat in a separate room she’s comfortable in, with food, water, toys, and a litter box, if you have guests over. This way she’ll feel safe, and you can keep track of her.
- Make sure your indoor kitty doesn’t slip out the door when guests arrive, packages are delivered, or when carolers stop by. Having your cats microchipped (even indoor-outdoor cats) can ensure they get back to you in case they do get lost.
- Have a sitter check in on your cats if you’re going away, instead of bringing them with you. They’ll most likely be less stressed if they stay in their own home.
- Don’t use salt or chemicals to melt snow. We know you want a safe walkway for guests who come for the holidays, but these substances can be lethal for cats if ingested. Protect community cats in your neighborhood, and your own indoor-outdoor cats, and get pet friendly de-icers.
- Consider helping community cats. To keep cats safe and comfortable during the holidays, and give back during the season, you can build a shelter for community cats, or buy one. View our winter weather tips to learn how to make cats comfortable in the cold weather.
See our complete list of holiday safety tips for cats. Happy holidays!