1. Want to Have a Green Pet, But Aren't the Do It Yourself Type?
Even if you’re not “crafty” and you have no intentions of doing it yourself, you can still jump feet first into green pet care without breaking the bank.
Pursue 100% organic pet foods, beds made from renewable resources, and products that don’t contain petroleum-based plastics or BPA. Research the companies you buy from. Support your local pet store. Use biodegradable products whenever possible. And adhere to these guidelines.
2. You’ve Heard the Mantra: Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.
Focus first on the reduce. The first rule in becoming more green is asking yourself a difficult question: Do I need it? Does my pet need it?
Reducing what you consume and use is a great way to begin the greening process. Most of the extraneous pet accoutrements in our lives are really for us, not our pets, and we can live without them! If it's not making your pet happier or healthier, you just might not need it.
3. Adopt and Rescue for a Truly Green Pet Experience
The absolute most green decision you can make around pet care is to rescue or adopt a pound puppy.
Sure, many breeds have panache, but purebreds often come with health problems and a hefty price tag. Health issues aside, there are thousands of loving, gentle, healthy, and beautiful animals waiting for homes in shelters across the country; many of whom may be put to death if they’re not adopted, simply because there isn’t enough room to house them.
4. Spay and Neuter Your Pets
Part of being a responsible pet owner is helping to control and reduce the population of stray and unwanted pets. Spay or neuter your pets, especially if they run free and encounter other animals.
5. Don’t Preserve Their Poo
Oh, how handy are those long plastic casings your morning paper comes in? And they’re free! Ever thought about what happens when you toss your pet’s morning relief? That poo is preserved nearly forever inside that neatly knotted plastic package.
Consider biodegradable poo baggies. They’re another product to purchase, yes. However, the long term benefits of allowing organic matter to decompose and essentially disappear, along with its biodegradable vessel, is far preferable to a package of poo preserved in a landfill for hundreds of years.
When asked what she considered to be the most green thing pet owners could do, Dr. Erica Mollica, DVM, of Carroll Gardens Veterinary Group in Brooklyn, NY answered, “I am always amazed at how many owners do not pick up after their dogs. By using biodegradable bags and cleaning up waste, you are promoting a healthier environment and reducing the spread of diseases.”
You can also encourage your local legislators to follow in San Francisco’s footsteps. They’re attempting to collect pet waste and turn it into methane-based energy for homes!
6. Clean Up with Vinegar and Baking Soda
For a dog bed that needs deodorizing, sprinkle the bed with baking soda. Allow it to sit for fifteen minutes. Then vacuum it out.
For accidents, instead of bleach or other commercial cleaners, sprinkle vinegar mixed with a bit of water on the accident zone. It will remove the pheromones that encourage marking behaviors and should clean all scents and stains, as well as anything pre-packaged.
7. Doing it Yourself Doesn’t Always Mean It’s Green
If you do decide to take the “do it yourself” leap, remember to weigh the impact your decisions will have.
Making a product yourself from previously used materials is probably the most green way to go. Making a product yourself from materials you need to purchase may be a fun and worthwhile project, but it might not end up being very earth-friendly.
Purchasing a dog toy made from recycled materials is great. Those materials may have otherwise ended up in a landfill. But where will they end up when you’re done with them? If the answer is...in a landfill anyway. Consider purchasing biodegradable toys, like rope pulls made from hemp. Or, of course, make your own!
How to Be a ‘Green’ Dog Parent
Homemade Food for Earth Friendly Dogs
Natural and Homemade Shampoo for Dogs
Safe and Simple Home Remedies for a Green Dog
How to Make a Dog Bed at Home
This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by,your veterinarian. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard or delay seeking professional advice due to what you may have read on our website.