5 tips on Xmas cat care
Cat owners are well aware that if something new is introduced into the kitty space, then your felines will immediately want to explore, climb, play with and sometimes, destroy, the new additions.
As generally cats seem to think anything that is in their space is (understandably) for their entertainment, its important to take their curiosity and playfulness into account, when decorating for holidays and the Christmas season.
Here are a few timely tips for cat owners to help keep their cats and Christmas season stress free and safe.
Christmas decorations and Tree
The decorations that are hung on the Christmas tree, are one of the biggest distractions for cats. They find these balls, baubles, lights and dangling shapes irresistible, and will paw at, pull down, tangle up, and chew everything.so, the whole decoration can be the centre of attention of your cats and is a temptation that will be damaged but can also present some dangers. Not to mention happily climbing and possibly tipping over the tree itself.
If you have a suitable cat tree, you can use this as a decoration point, and provide the cats with a climbable and inclusive style Christmas tree. This is an excellent way to re-purpose for the season and include your felines in the festivities, choosing cat friendly decorations. Keep in mind that tinsel and fairy lights are pretty but need to be checked to ensure they will not be an issue for chewing or ingestion by your kitties. Soft felt style decorations, or larger plastic, unbreakable balls, maybe a good option for decorations.
Plan to keep the more delicate tree ornaments and hangings out of your cat's reach as much as possible, with location a primary way to do this, out of the cats’ accessible areas. Having the tree as a minimalised structure, or representation, can be a solution to prevent climbing. Stringing lights and baubles well out of reach is another solution, more banner style than wrapped around the tree.
If you are creative, and don’t mind your cats enjoying the fun, you can make cat friendly paper banners and baubles from ping pong balls etc, so your cats can remove and play with them over the Christmas period. A fun but potentially messy solution!
Gifts of course, are best out of reach if your cats are tempted with ribbons and wrapping, so that Christmas is not spoiled by early openings and accidental damage.
Customized flowers and themed plants such as the Christmas Lilly or any sort of lilies are poisonous for pets, so are not suitable to have in the home for your cat and kittens. If unsure, check with your vet so that you can have any flowers or foliage without risk to your felines.
During the busy Christmas season, you also need to take care of the cats eating regime. You might need a little extra help to ensure your cats are well catered for, if you are busy or away from home. An automatic pet feeder can help with keeping your cats to a regular routine, even if you are needing to spend more time away from them than you would like. Knowing they are catered for regardless, to suit their normal routine, can help keep everyone’s Christmas preparations stress free.
Cats and kitchen safety during the Christmas holidays.
Christmas holidays are all about making wonderful festive delights and often means a crammed and busy kitchen, with lots of fast-moving feet and interesting ingredients and tools on counters. This cluttered kitchen can be the dangerous playground for your cats, especially when your attention is focussed on the dishes not the kitties. If you are distracted in the kitchen and ais unable to be attentive towards your cats, you need to keep them out of the kitchen. When your attention is divided, and they are in the kitchen, they will climb and will paw at your cooked and uncooked ingredients, possibly tip over hot things and generally add a level of chaotic unpredictability that is not helpful in the cooking process. Its wiser and safer to keep your cats occupied elsewhere when you need to maximise your culinary skill application.
A kitten is not a gift
Not to mention, whilst you may of course give your cat a Christmas present, you shouldn't give a kitten as a Christmas present, unless it’s a very well-planned event with the recipient able to take good care of and love the kitten as a new member of the family, not a toy. Truth be told, owning a kitten should never be a surprise and should be a responsible decision.
When you gift a kitten as Christmas present, you must have the necessary things to care for the new addition in place, such as water, food, and litter box as well. So, gifting a cat should never be a surprise, and one should always make an informed decision regarding the purchase of the kitten. Of course, surprising the children with a new cat or kitten is delightful, as the parents of all are responsible adults and will have the necessary planning and care catered for in advance.
Consider your guests and visitors
You might plan a Christmas party in the holidays, but you need to consider your visitors and guests to your home, which is home and whole world for inside cats. Consideration of how your cats may react to guests, especially ones they have not met before, as well as the accompanying merriment and loud noises in their usual environment, may cause distress and anxiety. Ensuring you have a safe room option easy for your cats to access, where they are safe and feel protected, helps ensure everyone in the family enjoys the festivities. Whenever you are going to host the party, you need to inform your visitors about your kittens as well, to check that the visitors are comfortable with cats in the home. Some might have allergies, so you should inform your visitors in advance, and if needed, adjust to accommodate all who will be sharing the space.
The bottom line: Christmas is a time for fun for all, but planning with all in mind helps keep it that way.
In a nutshell, you need to prep your Christmas holidays and party while considering the requirements of your cats as well, as part of the family. Especial care when choosing decorations and flowers or food, with your cats in mind, will avoid stressful situations or potentially Vet visits. And of course, don’t forget to get all the family members a suitable gift, for a fun fur family Festive experience!