6 Simple Steps to Reduce Your Pet's Carbon Paw Print
It’s not uncommon for us to make decisions in our day to day routine that can help reduce our carbon footprint. We often use reusable shopping bags in place of the plastic ones offered at grocery stores and super markets. You may drive a vehicle that runs off of electricity instead of gasoline. Even recycling materials such as bottles, cans, newspapers, cardboard, etc. makes a difference! But, with all of your hard work and eco-conscious mind to reduce your carbon footprint, there’s someone living in your house right now that could use a little help when it comes to being environmentally friendly. Who is that someone? Your pet! Everything from what your dog or cat eats (food and treats), to their waste, toys, bedding, even grooming habits effects their carbon paw print every day. But don’t worry; there are 6 simple steps you can take to help your pet be as “green” as possible and of course we’re here to help you!
1. Food & Treats
It takes a lot of energy to produce both our and our pet’s food. But when you both have to eat, how do you make it more environmentally friendly? For starters, buying local fresh produce and proteins or even raising your own can help! Supporting local farmers reduces the need for large trucks to transport food from warehouse to warehouse across the country or even the world. Not to mention that you’re guaranteed fresh wholesome foods that are rich with nutrients that both you and your pet will greatly benefit from.Of course there are some human foods that can do more harm than good when it comes to your pet’s health, so make sure to study up on what is and is not safe before feeding anything new to your pup. If the thought of preparing meals for your pets sounds like a daunting task or you’re just unsure of what is safe for them to eat, look for dog or cat food that comes available in recyclable packaging. A lot of pet food manufacturers (ask us about Stella & Chewy’s or the Honest Kitchen!) have started using Tetra Pak processing for their canned food and have even made the packaging for their kibble easy to recycle with a Terracycle program that allows you to donate back to local charities (Earthborn).
2. Scoop The Poop!
It is estimated that dogs and cats worldwide accumulate half a billion pounds of waste each day! Allowing feces to sit outside, means that it will most likely end up in our local waterways. Plus, all of the nitrogen in your pet’s poop isn’t good for our wet ecosystem. Earth Rated Poop Bags are a great eco-friendly resource for ensuring that you clean up properly after Fido does his business. Not only is their packaging made from recycled materials, but the bags themselves are biodegradable. Look for them the next time you’re in one of stores!
3. Make Your Own Kitty Litter/Biodegradable Litter
The clay in kitty litter can be environmentally destructive as it is a result from strip mining. There are however, numerous environmentally friendly materials that can be used for indoor cats to do their business in the litter box. Shredded newspapers, pine or cedar shavings, and sand are just a few examples. If you don’t have the time or resources to make your own kitty litter at home you can pick up a bag of World’s Best or Naturally Fresh the next time you shop with us. These two litters are great alternative options that are made from corn and walnut shells!
4. Recycled Toys/Supplies
Owning a pet means owning an abundance of pet “stuff”: collars, leashes, toys, beds… the list goes on and on. Usually when your new puppy outgrows a collar or chews threw a toy it ends up in the trash. You can imagine how much waste is accumulated just in expired toys alone. What if there was a better option for all of those chewed up bits of frisbees and balls? West Paw’s line of zogoflex dog toys is the perfect solution! Their toys withstand some seriously tough chewers, and when they are destroyed (let’s face it, it’s only a matter of time) they offer a FREE onetime replacement. But even better, all those pieces of chewed up toy get recycled and made into brand new dog toys. Just bring them back to us and we’ll take care of the rest. We also carry brands that offer beds, collars, leashes, etc. that are made from recycled materials such as plastic bottles and climbing rope.
5. Grooming Habits
Although they certainly don’t need a bath every day, our pets do require a good scrub from time to time. And depending on their coat/fur type, some even require frequent visits to a groomer. There are some easy things you can do at home that might help lengthen the time in-between their visits to the groomer. Brushing your pet regularly can help ensure that mats don’t build up behind ears or other spots on their body that require clipping. Using a “waterless bath” deodorizing spray like Mutt Nose Best can help keep your pets smelling fresh in between baths.
6. Cleaning Supplies
Owning a pet means that sooner or later an accident is bound to happen. Especially for young pups that are not yet house broken. You will certainly need something to clean up after their mess on your floors, couches, vehicles, etc. Skouts Honor is a non-toxic, biodegradable cleaner that is free of harsh chemicals, chlorine, and formaldehyde. Not only is it eco-friendly, but it always safe to use around your pets and family. It’s a win-win in our book, which is why we carry their line of pet specific cleaners and deodorizers at all five of our locations!
And one last bonus tip to help you become more “Green in 2019”… From now until January 31, anytime you shop with us and opt out of using one of our bags to carry your purchases home, you’ll be entered to win a $50 Loyal Biscuit Co. gift card! But don’t worry, if you forget your reusable shopping bags we are now offering our very own Loyal Biscuit Co. green reusable tote for only $1.99.
Sources: theHonestKitchen.com: "7 Simple Solutions to Reduce Your Pets Carbon Paw Print"
and PetsPlusUS.com: "13 Simple Ways to Reduce Your Pets Carbon Paw Print"