The Crazy Way Some People Try to Prevent Christmas Tree Theft

How some people keep others from stealing Christmas trees

foxPaul J Hartley/Shutterstock

According to the National Christmas Tree Association, the average cost of a real Christmas tree in the U.S. in 2017 was $75. (The average cost of a fake tree was $107.)

Seventy-five dollars is not chump change, and sadly, some Grinchy people have taken to stealing real Christmas trees in order to save money. Every year, trees are reported stolen from tree lots, both for-profit and those run by Boy Scouts and other groups. Another route tree vandals take is to cut down evergreen trees on college campuses, farms and private property. Do these people have no shame?

How some people discourage Christmas tree theft

So, desperate times call for desperate measures. In an attempt to discourage tree theft, some have decided to get their revenge by dousing their trees with fox urine. Yes, you read that right. It turns out that fox urine doesn’t have a bad smell outdoors in the cold, but once the tree warms up indoors, the smell is beyond horrid.

As an example of this practice, the University of Idaho, which lost trees to vandals every year, decided to take action. Their response was to spray their trees with a mix of fox urine, skunk scent and a sticking agent. The tree-spraying program began in 1990 and has drastically reduced the number of tree thefts on campus, according to the school’s website.

On the hunt for a perfect Christmas tree this year? Here are the best real Christmas trees species!

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Julia K. Porter
Dr. Julia Porter has worked in Higher Education since 2008, following a career as a High School teacher in Brooklyn, NY. She holds a PhD in Global Leadership from Indiana Tech, an MA in English Literature from Brooklyn College, and a BS in English Education from Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis (IUPUI). She lives in Indiana with her husband, daughter, and rambunctious Australian Shepherd.