4 Ways To Green Your Pet
Taking good care of your pets doesn’t need to take a toll on the environment. With these affordable, simple solutions, you can high-five Mother Nature while still making sure your pet’s needs are met.
Keen on Green
We love our dogs and cats, but the products we use to care for them should love the Earth, too. Here, Lindsay Coulter, David Suzuki’s Queen of Green, gives us four ways to reduce the carbon paw print of your four legged friends.
1. Go Green When You Clean
Coulter advises pet owners to check products labels for toxic chemicals – especially parfum, parabens and sodium lauryl sulfate. You can make you own pet shampoo using natural ingredients, including Castile soap and essential oils.
2. Green Their Toys
The next time you hit the pet store, choose playthings made from natural materials. Or make your own out of recycled cat string and fabric.
3. Keep Them on a Short Leash
While cats are not responsible for the declining populations of birds, they are still catching far too many. “It’s best to keep cats in-doors during sensitive times, such as bird-breeding season,” says Coulter.
Your pooch is no angel, either, when it comes to wildlife. Consider putting a leash on your dog when walking through any forests or wildlife areas.
4. Scoop Up the Poop
Some of the biggest ways pets impact the environment is related to their daily business.
Dogs: Swap plastic doggy-doo-doo bags for scooper boxes made from recycled cardboard and newspaper.
Cats: Conventional kitty litter clumps because it uses sodium bentonite, a clay ingredient produced through the destructive process of strip mining. Look for the litter made from biodegradable products, such as wood pellets and recycled paper. You can deodorize by keeping an open box of baking soda nearby.
This article was originally in the November 2009 issue of Reader’s Digest. Subscribe today and never miss an issue!