There are many reasons why cats climb trees, and one of these is to track down the soulful call of newborn baby birds calling out to their mom. The problem is, when it comes to cats, what goes up doesn't always come down so easily. A cat in Lancaster County recently had a week-long ordeal of being stuck in a tree before it was finally rescued. Even if you don't own a cat of your own, now is the prime time to add deterrents to keep neighboring cats out of your trees. Consider these three ways a tree service can keep the kitties out of your trees.
Trim Low Branches
Cats start their foray into your trees by embedding their claws in the bark. However, cats always use lower tree branches to help get themselves higher up the tree. There are two good reasons to have your tree branches trimmed right now:
- A cat uses low branches to climb higher, and they also use them to reach nesting birds situated in places near the tree but not in the tree. For example, if you have a birdbox on a metal pole with baby birds inside, the cat can't climb a metal pole, but it could use low tree branches to inch their way closer to the birdbox.
- Removing dead branches by trimming them eliminates the possibility of cat injury if it snaps under the animal's weight. Dead tress and tree branches are also a hazard to both animals and property during seasonal storms, so removing them now stops their chance of being dangerous.
After removing tree branches, the next point to consider is how to keep cats off your tree bark. Talk to a tree service like Pete & Ron's Tree Service, Inc. about installing tree wraps to keep those damaging claws out of the bark. The clawed bark can fall away from the tree, and this leaves the trunk exposed to damage by rodents and fungus. There are a number of different materials which can be used to wrap the tree trunk to deter the cat from trying to climb.
One of the most effective materials is made of sheet metal. This wraps around the tree, close to the bark, and stops the cat from being able to use the bark to climb the tree. It is also a useful addition to a garden where the tree bark is being eaten by squirrels and other little creatures. It is advisable to have a reputable tree service install the guard, rather than it being a do-it-yourself job because if you attach it incorrectly, you could damage either the bark or the tree roots.
Other effective tree bark guard materials include netting, rigid plastic, and foil-based papers. These are all useful for making the cat climb something else as they do not like the feeling of these materials beneath their paws.
One thing cats hate more than being stuck up a tree for a week is water, so consider installing motion-activated sprinklers around the base of the tree to frighten the kitties away. Talk to your tree service team about the best location for the sprinklers before they are installed. By doing so, you have the added benefit of keeping the tree roots watered during the hot summer months. You want the sprinklers to be aimed high enough to deter the cat, but not high enough that it wets other things that shouldn't be very wet.
By using one or all of these methods, you can keep cats out of your trees this spring. Not only will the baby birds thank you, but so will the fire service department when you don't have to call them for a cat rescue!