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  • Marcy Santos

How to Pet-Proof Your Christmas Tree

In many homes around the world, our pets are an extension of the family. Their

cuddling, kisses, and cute antics are second to none. They get special treatment,

extra love, and sometimes even more attention than other family members. Around the

holiday season, our favorite furry creatures always seem to turn up the charm –

especially when it comes to decorations and Christmas trees in particular.

Although we love them, we don’t want them to knock down the Christmas tree and

potentially injure themselves.

Like the playful animals they are, many pets see a tree as a shiny new toy. They

want to wrestle around with it, chew on its branches, and play catch with the bright

balls hung from it. It can be comical, but it can also quickly turn dangerous.

But how do you keep your pet safe from the potential danger a Christmas tree can

present? There are many simple, precautionary steps you can take to ensure both

you and your pet have the best and safest time this holiday season.

Crate Training

A crate is a great way to keep your home safe from wandering paws and curious

tails. Many pets enjoy the comfort of a cozy crate. It gives them a safe space to return to that is entirely theirs. Setting up the inside of a crate with a blanket and one of their favorite toys creates a welcoming environment that your pet can safely stay in until someone comes home and can monitor the tree. There are options in all sizes and price ranges so

finding the right fit for your pet should be no trouble.

Go Artificial

An inexpensive and safe option for this holiday season is to purchase an artificial

tree for your decorating purposes. Pine needles and branches can be harmful and

quite possibly toxic if ingested by an unsuspecting pet. Even with your best efforts,

a tree will undoubtedly lose pieces and create debris on the floor. Avoid an upset

pet stomach, skip the temptation for your pet, and go artificial this year.

Hide Cords

Lights give a Christmas tree its spirit, but your pet doesn’t quite see it the same

way. Bright and shiny, lights quickly become something your pet wants to play with

as they wrestle it around. Getting tangled or even electrocuted is no way for your

pet to spend the holiday season. By covering up the cords you can ensure a safer

way to dress your tree in twinkles. Hide them under the tree skirt, deep within the

branches, or use clips and tape to keep them out of reach.

Steer Clear of Fragile

If you’re concerned that your pet may get into the tree and your ornaments may

pay the price, avoid using them altogether. Find a special place on a mantel or

higher shelf where they can sit safely. For your tree, use pieces that will not break

as easily or at least those that don’t hold a sentimental value. Plastic ornaments

that won’t shatter and cause a potential hazard are your best bet.

No Food on the Tree

Everyone loves a good gingerbread man and stringing popcorn to place on the tree

– including your pets. Shiny new ornaments are attractive to an animal, but food

and the sweet smell of something they can get their teeth on are on a whole other

level. If your tradition dictates that you decorate your tree with edible ornaments,

think again. Avoid using food on your tree so as not to tempt your pet into

destroying your tree.

Hide Presents Away

Hiding presents from your pet is a necessity. In addition to the tree itself, your pet

will view these gifts as more play toys. Imagine waking up to gift wrap and

presents littered across your floor? It’s enough to ruin anyone’s Christmas

experience. By hiding gifts until Christmas Eve or Christmas morning you can save

them from being licked, torn, or destroyed.


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