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Happy Wednesday Everyone!
Whether you are a cat person or a dog person, you know that our fur babies come with a certain level necessities: food, accessories, grooming tools, litter, toys, treats and more. So how can we make their routines a little more green? By shopping a little smarter and putting in a tiny bit more effort, you can make leaps and bounds in your pets sustainability.
Switch out your pets toy’s with some sustainable alternatives. Rope toys will be the easiest item to find for your pooch. Many of these are hemp, jute or organic cotton. Jute is a renewable fiber resource which has a very small environmental impact since it does not require irrigation or fertilizers to grow. As for hemp, there is growing demand for other aspects the plant in North America, meaning that there is a surplus of the stems and stocks available for textile use. Both jute and hemp are some of the oldest fibers in the world and are known for their resiliency and strength. Additionally organic cotton requires 71% less water then conventional cotton and cannot be fertilized or treated with harmful chemicals during growing or in post-harvest manufacturing. As always, look for pet toys made in or near your country to reduce their transportation-related carbon footprint.
If you are into DIY check out this great tutorial on how to make easy rope toys out of upcycled t-shirts and sweat pants! And as always, supervise your pets with their toys to avoid unnecessary accidents!
And although cats are typically less needy than dogs, they also enjoy a good play! Look for toys stuffed with organic catnip, hemp or cotton fabrics which are dyed with non-toxic chemicals. I love this hemp mouse toy by From the Field.
Sleeping is a huge part of our pets lives, in fact cats can sleep 16 to 20 hours per day. In that case it is even more important for your pet to have a good place to sleep. These universal pet beds are made from 78 recycled plastic bottles in the US. Durable and washable, they will withstand a lot of abuse and will be more resilient than other beds.
Feeling crafty? Well check out this no-sew DIY dog bed project from Miss Frugal Mommy. To green it up a little further, I would personally use thrifted fleece blankets or fleece blankets which are going unused in your home (why waste a brand new blanket on a dog or cat?) Just be sure to launder them thoroughly on hot. Additionally fleece is a great option because when it is cut, it doesn’t fray at the edges, which means no flyaway threads.
All dogs are going to go, and it is our job to clean up after them (as good citizens) but don’t hermetically seal your dogs business in a plastic bag, make sure it can compost away with these corn-based baggies from BioBag. Another note about compostable poop bags is that they aren’t all created equally. Some bags need a composting facility which brings the waste to a certain temperature to break down. Most backyard composters won’t reach that temperature. Plus due to potential health risks, pet waste should never be used on edible garden spaces, only on ornamental plants. If you are interested in backyard waste composting, check out Ensopet’s Waste Composting Kit.
Let’s not forget about our kitty friends. Most cat litters are clay based, dusty and heavy. Try an ecofriendly kind like Blue Naturally Fresh litter made from walnut husks! There is also litter made from pine chips, newspaper pellets, wood shavings, coconut husks, and corn husks. The choices are endless! Additionally, I have seen some individuals use shredded paper from their shredders, though I am unsure of it’s effectiveness in odor control.
Let’s face it, the best part of having a pet is spoiling it to pieces. However given the face that our dogs and cats are carnivores, they are subject to that same meat-related carbon footprint. Many pet treats are produced from the by-products from human-destined meats. This means there is a lot of mixing and matching of these by-products like chicken meal or beef meal aka meats unsuitable for human consumption. In actual fact, this eliminates a great deal of edible meats from going to the landfill. As long as these treats are made by quality producers, I personally don’t mind this! Our girls really enjoy freeze dried liver, tripe and raw bones (both the cat and dog!)
Have any green pet hacks of your own? Share your ideas in the comment section below! Thanks again for reading everyone, and have a great week!