A pet is a cherished member of your family. Not only are they important companions, but they help to improve their human’s health and well-being. And just like us, they also leave a big ecological “paw print”, if you will, of their own. When you are a pet owner, it’s important that you reduce your pet’s carbon footprint by making responsible decisions. Here are a few tips to help you maintain an eco-friendly home with your pets.
Responsible food selections
One of the main factors that contribute to your pet’s “paw print” is the food that you feed them. In some cases, a medium-sized dog can have a footprint that is similar to a huge SUV, which is largely due to the dog food industry and overall food consumption. Dogs and cats are responsible for eating up to 30 percent of the meat consumption by pets in the U.S., which has a large environmental impact.
Many companies are putting a bigger emphasis on sustainability when they make food, which is a result of the growing number of pet owners that are leading eco-friendly and organic lifestyles, so their dog’s food has been changed to be sustainable as well. The Pampered Pup has a great rundown of many organic and eco-friendly pet food options, you will find many of these options available in stores across the country. With so many online sources, you can search for tips on how you can make homemade meals to provide food that is safe to give your dog.
Popular dog food has also become formulated to be healthier and sustainable pet living. Bags of dry pet food tend to mean a smaller footprint and by-product. You can find lots of food alternatives to choose from to help ensure that you have the healthy and sustainable food that you want to feed your pup.
It’s important to feed your pet organic, healthy, and environmentally conscious food that is made by a responsible company. Also, think about the packaging of these different pet foods and focus on buying pet food in recyclable packaging or in bulk, so that you are getting as little plastic as possible. When you store treats and food, make sure to use a reusable and washable storage container and not a plastic bag.
Having a negative effect on the environment, pet waste can spread disease to other wildlife and pets as well as contaminate water sources, leave landmines for others to dodges in parks and sidewalks, and add methane to landfills. The best choice is to look for a biodegradable litter option, which can include bags made out of wheat, nutshells, old newspapers, and wood shavings.
Eco-friendly pet supplies
Before you shop for a new pet leash, kennel, bowl, or collar, look for second-hand options or ask friends and family if they have any extras or items they don’t use anymore. When you do need to buy some new supplies, choose supplies that are made from a natural-based material or have been recycled such as cat scratcher made out of recycled cardboard material. If you are crafty or a DIY-er, you can get creative when making items for your pet to play with. And, if you plan to throw out supplies that your pet no longer needs or uses, donate them to a local pet shelter.
Easily reduce the number of chemicals in your house by creating your own deodorizers and cleaners. Use rags and towels instead of one-time-use paper towels, but if you do end up using a paper towel, just make sure that it is composed when you are done. And, when you bathe your pet, just be aware of how much water you use and make sure to use homemade or natural bathing products.
When you find yourself frequently replacing your pet’s furniture after your pet has ruined it, you find that you are wasting a lot of resources, which makes you less environmentally friendly. Instead, you should look for dog furniture that is made with durable materials such as synthetic materials that are easy to clean and hard to rip apart. Also, look for durable furniture that your dog will not be able to chew up.
When you think about it, there are tons of plastic toys for your pets already in the world. These toys will have an impact on our environment, which grows as you buy more. For those pet owners that want to be more eco-friendly, think about making your own pet toys. If you are crafty or a DIY-er, then you can make lots of toys out of old belongings, t-shirts, and rope.
Like food, you can also get eco-friendly pet shampoo. Make sure you look for options that are the best choice for your pet that can also help the environment. The shampoo you choose should reduce your water usage any time you bathe your pet, so you should be able to fill your tub and run the water only occasionally so that you can heat it up when needed.
When you choose a pet that needs a good home from the local pet shelter, not only are you rescuing a pet that is in need of a home, but you are choosing a more humane and sustainable option than if you got a pet from a breeder or a pet store. Many animals are raised to be sold in a store and are transported from far away and unhealthy sources like puppy mills. When pets are transported to a store or you need to travel out of town to see a breeder, you are increasing the carbon footprint that is necessary to find your pet, when you could significantly cut down your travel by just vising a local shelter. When you adopt from a local pet shelter, you help the shelter and other animals as well.
Neuter and Spay
Everyone knows that there are many pets out there without a home. Millions of pets are euthanized every year since shelters aren’t able to support all the pets that are coming in. to help reduce overpopulation along with unnecessary euthanization, so it is better to neuter or spay your pet.