“For every year this Christmas tree, Brings to us such joy and glee.”

Today is colder than it has been, and it’s raining which adds a bit of bite to the chill. A strong breeze is blowing the leaves and some of the branches. It’s a day to stay inside and be warm and cozy. I’m thinking Hallmark movies.

The Christmas tree has sometimes been a prime target. One of my cats loved to climb it. I remember the first time I saw her halfway up the tree. She was peeking out from the branches and looking at me. I didn’t know if she wanted help or if she was just letting me know where she was. I decided to let her figure out the way down. She did and took a few ornaments with her. That same cat also loved sleeping on the tree skirt under the warmth of the lights. By the end of the Christmas season the tree skirt was black with fur.

My mother put food on her tree. Foolishly we didn’t think of it that way. We saw decorations, but Shauna, my dog at the time, another boxer, saw real sugar cookies and strands of popcorn. We have a picture of her pulling a cookie off the tree. She was quite adept as only the cookie came off the tree and not any other other ornaments. When the cookies were gone,  Shauna decided the popcorn looked good. She grabbed the closest piece of a strand and pulled. It wasn’t the best plan as the strand was around the tree front to back. She might have gotten away with it, but the tree shook and a few ornaments fell. We found her munching on popcorn still attached to the strand and having from the tree. We decide that surrender was the best response so we took the rest of the popcorn off the tree.
Gracie doesn’t touch the tree. She gives it a few sniffs, finds nothing and moves on. My cats were five when I adopted them and were too old for tree climbing though Fern does love to sleep on the same tree skirt under the warmth of the lights. At the end of the season the tree skirt is now white with fur. Cats do love to be cozy.

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10 Comments on ““For every year this Christmas tree, Brings to us such joy and glee.””

  1. Erin Says:

    Fritz ate a cookie off the tree that was preserved in something because I think Sarah gave it to me years ago when she was in elementary school. He survived the ordeal without even a stomach ache. No more food on my tree, either. I miss stringing popcorn.

    • katry Says:

      Erin,
      The icicles came off the tree after one of my cats ate them. Popcorn was next for me. I never did hang cookies.

      Gracie was the craziest puppy, but the tree never interested her. For that I am thankful.

      • Erin Says:

        LOL, Kat. I love icicles, then one day I found part of one hanging out of Baggy’s butt. Also can’t use curling ribbon (same problem.) My tree is just lights and ornaments, with soft pet friendly ones on the bottom. Packages are just wrapped in paper with no adornments. Also, only water in the Christmas tree with no additives. Marley likes to think he’s drinking in the wild.

      • katry Says:

        Erin,
        I found out the same way that my cat was munching on icicles. We all stopped using ribbons a long time ago.

        At 17 my cats still like to grab hanging ornaments so they don’t go on the bottom of the tree but they don’t touch class so they’re safe. Strange!

  2. Richard Says:

    Wish I could say it’s colder here, but non, it’s not. Cool-ish, but that’s about it. On the brighter side, I finally bought a pair of weight gloves for my workout. It’s the diff’rents between night and day. Before the gloves, the little diamond pattern cut into the metal gripping surface just turned my hands into ‘handburger’ … now, there’s no problem – and I have a more certain grip. Nothing is more unsafe than not watching every move y’ make with free weights. Momentum gives ’em a life of their own and, if you’re not careful, they can hurt ya real bad, real quick. Best $9 I ever spent.

    As a non-pet household, our tree only had to worry about the punishment we little kidlets inflicted upon it. Sometimes the punishment occurred during the process of ‘decorating’ it. It’s a good thing Mom wasn’t a stickler for perfection with the three of us doing the ‘decorating’ … the Application of the Tinsel was probably the most carefree throwing we ever engaged in.

    Friends of mine put things like popcorn and cookies on their tree … I never understood that. Still don’t. Sounds as if the boxer had her act together … until she got to the popcorn.

    Until you mentioned it, I never thought about the ‘tree climbing’ phenomenon. That sounds like it’s a bit on the ‘household fire hazard’ side – or at least the Immense Amount of Breakage’ side.
    That thing about cats liking to sleep under the lights for warmth makes absolute sense.

    • katry Says:

      Richard,
      It was cold and damp most of the day. I didn’t go out but stayed inside and did some wrapping. One box got filled and addressed. I’m glad you finally got your gloves. Now you can lift away!

      My childhood dog never touched the tree, but it did fall down a couple of times as the stand really wasn’t set well around the trunk.My mother went crazy when we just threw the tinsel icicles on the tree. She’d always explain that they icicles had to be put on the tree one at a time so they’d look like real icicles. We didn’t care. We were just interested in finishing the job.

      We used to string popcorn and cranberries then after Christmas we’d put the strands outside for the birds.

      Trees date back to the 16th century when the tree was decorated with colored paper, fruit and treats so our strands of cranberry and popcorn fit well historically.

      The cats seldom broke ornaments when climbing, and they generally stuck to climbing the trunk so I don’t think there was ever a fire hazard.

      All my cats love warmth.

  3. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    None of my childhood or adulthood dogs and cat touched the tree extensively. One or two of the cats may have batted at a low-hanging ornament or taken a drink out of the water reservoir. None climbed it. Tegan, my old terrier, used to burrow under the presents and nap. I think she chewed the corners on a few gifts when she was a teething puppy. She chewed whatever was in reach then.

    One of my fondest animal/Christmas memories was in 7th grade when I brought the science room lab rat home for Christmas break. The teacher asked for a volunteer on the last day of school before vacation so no time to consult with parents. I raised my hand. Unbeknownst to all, Ms Lab Rat was very pregnant. She gave birth to 7 little pinkies a couple of days later. They grew very fast and once they were mobile, I’d let them out to play on the Christmas tree skirt. Mom Rat was very attentive and kept them in line. No Hickory Dickory Dockery with the tree. I had had a special Christmas vacation watching them and I thanked the science teacher for the privilege. He didn’t seemed pleased to receive his lab rat back with interest, though.

    The weather was slightly drier up here but still murky.

    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      Your dogs and cats were far better behaved than mine who saw the Christmas tree as a wondrous toy.Gracie and the two cats have frown beyond attacking the tree so I’m glad for that.

      That’s a funny story. I don’t know why the science teacher wasn’t more attentive as I think he should have known given he must have had two rats together.

      That was good of Mom Rat to keep her babies in check.

      It is gray again today but warmer than I expected.

      Have a good day!

  4. olof1 Says:

    I’ve had several cats up the trees but only one dog got confused when I brought in the tree, Orvar of course and that dog could pee a lot 🙂

    I remember gingerbread men and women hanging in the trees when I was a kid and several apples too. We lived in a poor neighborhood so people used what they had. To be honest I think those trees were the most beautiful ones. Still I wouldn’t have apples in my tree (if I got a big real one) because all my dogs have loved to eat apples 🙂

    I have never seen popcorn strings in any tree hewre though, I guess it is just too much work to put them all on a thread 🙂 Flags were very popular for a while and since they didn’t want to look too patriotic they usually had strings with all the flags in Europe. That’s rare now days too.

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      I haven’t ever had a dog pee by the tree. Each has just seen the tree as a giant toy with lots of things to pull off and play with.

      We with pets have to choose carefully the natural ornaments we put on trees. My cats wouldn’t eat anything but Gracie would probably eat many things. She doesn’t eat apples so they’d be safe. Pinecones too would make great ornaments. They can be painted different colors and even have glitter. I had no money the Christmas after I bought my house so I made a chain out of construction paper. It was really pretty.

      It was a fun night when we all sat around the table listening to carols, eating Christmas cookies and making popcorn chains. It was a bit of a contest to make the longest popcorn chain. Pieces would fall off so the floor and table were covered in small pieces of popcorn.

      Have a wonderful day!


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