“Catmas” is just a few weeks away. Our three kitties – Sir Hubble Pinkerton, Master Aki and Edgar Allen Poe – have been especially well behaved since they know that Santa Claws has been watching them. They are getting very excited just wondering what kind of gifts Santa Claws will be giving them in just a few short weeks. They are absolutely positive that since they have been ever so cooperative that Santa Claws will be rewarding them for their exemplary behavior. In fact, the other day I overheard them sharing their wishes for a new cat tree, a plush kitty bed or a box of catnip mice wrapped up in fancy packages.
I was greatly relieved when I heard them say that even if the presents weren’t “up to snuff” that the boxes in which the gifts were contained would make excellent hiding places and the purrfect spot in which to curl up for a nap. Since Master Aki is a remarkable interior decorator, he was already envisioning the ideal places in which to locate them.
Although they are looking forward to being spoiled, they are also keenly aware that Catmas is also one of the most dangerous times of the year for kitties. Because they are deeply concerned that all cats are safe and secure they decided to share some holiday safety tips for kitty guardians.
A “Catmas” tree all decked out with its shiny ornaments is extremely tempting for any curious kitty to climb. So to prevent it from tipping over; make sure it is securely anchored.
Tinsel is one of the most dangerous decorations since shiny objects are extremely tempting. Tinsel potentially can cause gastrointestinal blockage and damage if ingested. By all means keep it off your tree.
Thin curly ribbons and bows on packages are kitty magnets. However they are also extremely dangerous. Decorate packages with wide ribbon. Most cats abhor aluminum foil. Consider using it in place of tissue and regular wrapping paper. It is both attractive and safe. Newspaper and plain brown paper make excellent substitutes. They are also recyclable and environmentally friendly.
Chewing on the needles of real or artificial trees is a big no-no. Real trees contain pine oil which can cause gastric upset, difficulty breathing and lack of coordination. The needles are sharp and can puncture a cat’s eye or intestine if swallowed. To deter kitty from eating them spray the branches with a mixture of cayenne pepper and water.
Although Poinsettia plants are not lethal, they can cause upset tummies. Stash them safely away. However, Mistletoe and holly berries are extremely toxic to kitties and if ingested can even cause death. Lilies are poisonous to cats, so keep them out of your home (see full list).
Sharing tidbits of turkey and roast beef is purrfectly fine. However too much of a good thing can cause digestive upset. Never feed cooked bones to kitties. Cooked bones splinter easily and can get stuck in a cat’s throat, and puncture the intestine and stomach.
Chocolate, especially the darker variety is highly toxic to cats. It contains caffeine and theobromine- two harmful substances. If you suspect your kitty has ingested chocolate, seems lethargic or is vomiting, immediately contact your veterinarian, your local E.R. or the ASPCA Poison Control Hot Line for advice.
Onions are potentially lethal to cats. Do not serve kitties any food containing onions.
To prevent kitties from escaping out the front door when visitors are arriving, put the cats safely in a quiet room with a litter box, some munchies, and a few toys. Turn on the radio to a classical station. Many kitties enjoy Mozart or Bach.
Our cats hope that these hints are useful, and they wish all your kitties the meowiest “Catmas”. They look forward to more suggestions our readers will share with a comment.