Help keep cats safe at Christmas with these simple steps

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Cats Protection has issued a number of top tips to help keep cats safe during the Christmas period. The festive season can be fun for us all, but offers plenty of new sights, smells and sounds for our feline friends.

Whether the tree is up and decorated, or whether you wait until Christmas Eve, the charity is keen to help cat owners reduce any potential hazards, keeping their cats safe and the tree intact.

Nine top tips to decorating the tree are:

· Keep an eye on the Christmas tree. Cats like to be the star of the show, so some may be tempted to climb to the top
· Display any hanging decorations closer to the top of the tree, out of the way of mischievous paws
· Ensure your Christmas tree has a sturdy base, or secure it with weights to stop it from toppling over
· Real Christmas trees can produce some oils that are toxic to cats. Make sure you pick up any fallen needles to prevent them from ingesting any parts of it and to protect their paws
· Avoid using glass baubles, or any decoration that may break easily
· Always switch off Christmas lights at the mains when you are not around
· Be careful with tinsel – if cats eat it, it can cause serious harm
· Don’t place any presents for your cat under the tree, especially if they contain catnip – it will just entice them further
· If your cat is particularly playful, make sure they are supervised when near the tree

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