Instructables

Kitty-safe Christmas Ornaments

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Does your cat like to mess with your Christmas tree and its ornaments? These quick-and-easy ornaments are safe for the cat, and will alert you when the cat messes with the tree.
 
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Step 1: Gather parts

Picture of Gather parts
You will need:

-- Some plastic easter egg halves. (Sparkly ones are more ornamental)

-- Some stiff bell wire (a strand of cat-5, or solid-core telephone wire works good)

-- Some small jingle-bells

-- A wire cutters

-- A small drill or push-pin (heating the push pin with a lighter will help you drill the holes)

Step 2: Cutting wire, tying to the bells...

Picture of Cutting wire, tying to the bells...
Cut the wire into 3-4" length, one strand for each ornament. Poke the wire through the jingle-bell and twist-tie it on.

Step 3: Drill or poke holes in the Easter Egg...

Picture of Drill or poke holes in the Easter Egg...
Using the small drill or a push pin, poke holes in the tops of the Easter Egg halves. Heating the push pin carefully with a match or lighter makes it easier to poke through the halves, and reduces chances of cracking the shell.

Step 4: Threading the bell...

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Poke the wire and bell through the shell and pull up snugly.

Step 5: Loop the end...

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Loop the end of the wire around a finger, and twist-tie at the base.

Step 6: Hang on tree...

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Hang the ornaments on the Christmas tree, towards the bottom of the tree, and on the outer limbs.

Step 7: FINISHED!

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All done! Very few ornaments exist that actually encourage your cat to play with them. If you're not wanting your cat to play with the tree, these can alert you when the cat is messing with the tree. You should not hang fragile or dangerous things on the low branches that the cat has access to. (No, our cat doesn't chew on lights or cords, that's why they're in the pictures.) It's interesting for us though, that the cat is less interested in the tree. Probably due more to us watching for her to play with the bells. She likes to be more private with her assaults on the tree.
Great idea my mom has six cats and this truly is a cat safe ornament
paravou4 years ago
I love this idea and it gives me something to do with all those eggs, now that my kids are pretty much to big for hunting them. I have a new kitten this is her first Christmas my older cats just like to sit near or under the tree but she was taking the ornaments (all the plastic or unbreakable ones off as quick as we could put them on. We learned 10 years ago  to put big bells on the bottom) Our cats do like the bells even the big ones.
Have a Merry Christmas and happy holidays.

landline (author)  paravou4 years ago
Thanks!  Got 'em up again on the tree this year.  Hope they work out for you.  Merry Christmas!
Choko-Ale5 years ago
I have and love cats too, and they've broken many ornaments until we decided to start using plushies. This is a great idea and I love the little jingle-bells, it will make my cats very happy :) Thanks for the tip!! I think that I'll try adding some sparks too.

The bells would make my cats happy, but maybe keep them on the floor... I haven't had a tree in a few years because they kept knocking down my apartment sized (Charlie Brownish) tree.

the bells shall not make your cat happy, they shall alert u...
landline (author)  zimmemic255 years ago
Indeed. Best of both worlds. I mean, if you WANT your cats to mess with the tree, this is probably the safest way to do it. But if you DON'T want them to mess with it, it lets you know they are.
Exactly! That's why I loved this project. I will send it to all my friends with cats.
landline (author)  Choko-Ale5 years ago
Thanks. This encourages me to do more Instructables.
I want them as toys for my cats, sometimes I like to spoil them a bit.
landline (author)  Choko-Ale5 years ago
Cats can be mischevious and lovable at the same time. The tree thing is figured out, and now just need to work on our nativity scene in the bay window. She's decided the bay window is a second litter box, or she's just too lazy to get out from her favorite perch to use the real one. Perhaps something on the site will help... Merry Christmas.
hammer98764 years ago
From the first Christmas as part of a married couple we have had stuffed cloth ornaments as decorations because of our cats. We have never had a broken glass ornament because we never bought them. Some of our "friends" gave them to us and they would go right out to Goodwill. Fairly dangerous for children and dogs, too.
6monkeyRS5 years ago
Good idea. I have cats too, and they like playing with the tree. I will try this one too.
landline (author)  6monkeyRS5 years ago
Enjoy... Let me know how it comes out.
ratgirl5 years ago
very neat i'll try this i can't even begin to tell you how many ornaments i lost cause of my cats although i don't think it will help all the way though they like to climb the whole tree. lol
Raggedyandy6 years ago
Very good Idea, I will have to share this with my Uncle for Next year, Better Yet make hims some and send them to him as a Christmas Gift, He would love Home Made Ornaments and these also serve a Purpose , I don't see why you couldn't Jazz them up a bit to better go with your theme is Scheme and a dab of Glitter here and there, Sounds like Fun Thanks for the Idea Raggedy
landline (author)  Raggedyandy6 years ago
Thanks for the kind word. The instructables community has been gracious in general. Will probably encourage me to put MORE stuff up.
beachbum6 years ago
One of my unbreakable ornaments has holes in it from my dog's teeth. This year my small tree sits on top of a tall chest of drawers.
Very Keri6 years ago
I know someone that puts these 12x12 squares of plastic green spiky stuff underneath her tree skirt to deter her cats. I have no idea what the stuff is called, but it's similar to astro turf, only its much spikier and you wouldn t want to step on it bare foot. (it wont hurt you, but its certainly unpleasant) I think you'd find it in either the garden or hardware section of the store. On a side note, my cat is relentless. The first year we had her, she knocked every single glass bulb off the bottom two feet of the tree and each one broke on the tile floor. I tried bells and she just LOVED them, plus they drove my ears crazy. This year I just put all my non breakable (and non jingling) ornaments on the bottom and really wrapped the hooks around the branches to keep them put. She's still knocked a few off, but I think I took all the fun out of it for her and now just sits under there like a beast in a jungle.
landline (author)  Very Keri6 years ago
So typical, huh... Takes all the fun out of things when it becomes legal! Merry Christmas!
Dsk0016 years ago
I know this was designed for a kitty but this would also work as kid safe and or puppy safe too. I know toddlers touch and investigate everything, you wouldnt want the kid to pull the tree towards him.
landline (author)  Dsk0016 years ago
Ah, good thought. As long as the entire ornament stayed together, otherwise might present a choking hazard, but then again, you have all the other hazards a Christmas Tree presents.
Mr.Fun6 years ago
Great idea, i have a kitten that always messes with the tree and even climbs into to the tree. this will help me figure out if she is attempting to climb it :)
John Smith6 years ago
Nice idea. Or, you could just make a small electric fence around the tree....
landline (author)  John Smith6 years ago
Have you been watching too much National Lampoon Christmas Vacation? ;)
LOL, no...
mrmath6 years ago
Does your cat climb up the center of the tree?
landline (author)  mrmath6 years ago
Thank heavens, no, I have a sort of good kitty, but I have heard (seen) kitties that will do that. The bells would hopefully let you know kitty was doing that. Hm... Maybe make a kitty-car-like alarm with a keychain that lets you know when the kitty is being naughty. (Santa already knows.)
although i dont have a cat, this is an awesome instructable. really nice! (favorited)
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