Cat playing with tinsel

What to do if the cat is full of tinsel?

Posted by

The most long-awaited magical holiday – New Year will be knocking on the door very soon. Adults and children are looking forward to it, counting the days. It’s nice when pets are nearby with a family expecting New Year’s miracles. But the most dangerous days of the year are coming, which can darken the festive mood of the owners, bring troubles to animals, up to mortal danger. The cat can gorge itself on bright New Year’s decorations (rain or tinsel) from the tree, and then it is important to know what to do in order to help and not harm the pet.

Tinsel is a big threat to the life of animals on New Year’s days

Cat or kitten owners are at the greatest risk when they dress up a Christmas tree in bright sparkling tinsel. Why do cats love to eat New Year’s rain? The appearance of New Year’s tinsel in the room attracts their attention. Thin shiny threads look like toys, so cats can eat tinsel and serpentine decorating the Christmas tree. The anatomical structure of the oral cavity is such that the papillae of the tongue, the bristles, are directed inward towards the pharynx. There is no way back for a foreign body that gets into the mouth, it is impossible to spit it out, the animal is forced to completely swallow it.

Once in the digestive tract, long shining threads from the Christmas tree string the loops of the small intestine, collecting them like an accordion. In places of contact with the intestine, a rupture occurs. Sometimes the tinsel is wrapped around the root of the tongue, the rest, the long part, moves into the stomach. If the cat ate rain or serpentine, waiting for them to be digested is in vain. Intestinal obstruction, peritonitis, and sepsis often develop, resulting in the death of the animal.

Signs of a foreign body in the intestine

Cats eat rain very often. If your cat is doing well, eating, playing, sleeping, there is no reason to worry. And if the animal’s behavior has changed, you need to be careful. A few days after the thread enters the digestive tract, severe complications such as acute intestinal obstruction may develop. The main symptoms will be:

  • depressed state, the animal hides in the corners,
  • refusal of food,
  • the cat begins to vomit sometime after eating,
  • absence or a small amount of excreted feces,
  • abdominal pain when trying to touch,
  • an increase in body temperature up to 40 degrees and above,
  • pet weight loss, dehydration.

Rain can wrap around the tongue, necrosis develops.


  • profuse salivation, an admixture of pus, blood,
  • the putrid odor from the mouth,
  • tearing the lips with paws, trying to get rid of a stuck object,
  • chomping movements of the jaws.

It happened, with a favorable outcome, that the rain, having entered the intestine, moving along it, safely left through the anus in a natural way. This is if there was less foreign matter than the rest of the food. More often, tinsel or serpentine are strung with an accordion, and a thin aluminum thread can cut the insides, causing them to perforate. Body temperature drops to critical levels – below 37 ° C. The animal dies in a few days from the peritoneal festering.

What if your cat ate rain or gorged on Christmas tree decorations? It is necessary to take emergency measures, try to induce a gag reflex. To do this, prepare a water-salt solution and solder a fluffy friend with a syringe. If a lot of time has passed, you can fill the cat with about 2 ml of petroleum jelly or castor oil, which will facilitate the passage of a foreign body through the intestines. It is likely that the thin threads will not even damage its walls.

Cat with tinsel
Cat with Tinsel

It happens that a piece of rain sticks out from under the tail of a cat. If the cat has swallowed the New Year’s rain, it is strictly forbidden to try to pull it out of the mouth or anus on its own. The thread may be too long, twisted, or cut into the esophagus, stomach, or intestines. Esophageal injuries are much more difficult to operate than intestinal injuries; healing is poor. It is better to cut off the visible part shorter and wait for the next exit until the rain comes out completely. Sometimes you have to do several “haircuts” until the tinsel is completely in the tray.

If there is no result if the decoration did not work the next day, urgently take the animal to the veterinarian. The stuck object will have to be removed surgically. As a rule, an x-ray is done beforehand. The positive moment of diagnostics is good visibility of the metalized tinsel in the pictures. The doctor will assess the condition of the pet. Before visiting the clinic, be sure to inquire about the presence of an operating surgeon. In case of a threat to health, an operation is performed. This is often the way to save a family friend. The cost of a surgical operation is high, about 15,000 rubles, not everyone will allow this. Recovery, rehabilitation is difficult, often fluffy beauties die in the postoperative period if the intestines were severely cut with sharp threads.

How to prevent a dangerous situation?

To avoid a situation in which you have to ask questions: what to do if the cat ate the rain, prevention will help. Better to prevent trouble than worrying about the pet’s well-being later. Moreover, on New Year’s Eve and the following days, it will be difficult to find a doctor. In a house with animals, you should not hang fragile lamps of garlands, electric wires, thin tinsel, it is necessary to decorate your home with them in such a way that the living creatures do not reach them.

If you see that your cat has been eating the same rain, you need to quickly remove it from the mouth, inspect if it is tangled around the tongue. Monitor your pet’s health. At the slightest ailment, if the cat is full of tinsel, you should immediately contact your veterinarian.

How to wean a cat from eating Christmas tree decorations?

To prevent your pet from eating the decorations decorating the Christmas tree, you can resort to tricks. Spraying the space with solutions with citrus aromas will help: hanging orange slices, scattering lemon peels – cats are irritated by these odors. It is recommended to sprinkle apple cider vinegar around the tree. If you grease the trunk of spruce with Tabasco sauce or other hot seasonings, the pungent aroma will discourage the cat from feasting on sparkling threads.

You should monitor your pet daily, observe it, protect it. Remember that “we are responsible for those we have tamed”, do not forget about this during the pre-holiday rush. Once your pet is safe and done, you can relax and start having fun celebrating the holiday.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s