Keeping Your Cat Out of the Tree

Are you planning to put up a tree for the holidays this year? If so, you may very well find yourself keeping a close eye on your cat once it’s up. Attacking the tree is one of Fluffy’s favorite seasonal traditions! Here, a Rochester, NY vet discusses keeping your kitty out of the tree.

Get A Fake Tree

Did you know that cats’ claws are purrfect for climbing trees? In the wild, kitties use trees for shelter, safety, nail care stations, napping spots, jungle gyms, and vantage points. Fluffy’s sharp little nails won’t be of much use climbing a fake tree, however. Consider getting a synthetic tree this year.

Careful Placement

Picking the right spot for your tree can also help you keep Fluffy out of it. Don’t put the tree too close to a sofa, desk, chair, or basically anything else your pet could jump off to get to the tree. That’s just asking for it!

Added Support

Use fishing line to secure the top of the tree to the wall or ceiling. This won’t show, but will provide some added support.

Sturdy Base

Make sure to get a sturdy base for your tree. Also, if you get a real tree, cover the water bowl. It could contain residues from pesticides, herbicides, sap, or other toxic substances.

Catproof Decorating

By kitty law, cats are not allowed to resist batting at any shiny objects that’s hanging just above their noses. Put shiny and fragile ornaments on the upper part of the tree, and keep decorations on the bottom part sparse. Also, be sure to use only sturdy, non-breakable ornaments on the lower branches.


While you probably can’t teach Fluffy to roll over, speak, or do, well, pretty much anything on command, you can change the way she thinks about the tree. When your furball approaches the tree, startle her by making a loud noise. Hopefully, this will make your kitty think twice about going near it!


If all else fails, just trick your kitty into behaving. Get Fluffy some fun new toys, and take time to play with her every day. If you tire your cat out with a fun, vigorous play session, she’ll probably be more interested in napping under the tree than climbing up it.

Season’s Greetings! Please feel free to contact us, your Rochester, NY pet clinic, anytime.

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