Taking care of a dog or cat requires significant financial and time commitments. These animals require supplies for food, shelter, play, and care. Unfortunately, some of these supplies can wind up in junkyards or polluting bodies of water. Additionally, animal overpopulation can ruin the ecosystem in your area, if pets are able to breed unchecked. Luckily, there are many ways to practice eco-friendly habits and purchasing behaviors as your care for your pet.
Adopt an Animal
Some pet dealers and breeders are concerned only with profits, running animal mills that allow them to supply pet stores and other animal markets with a large stock of animals. Unfortunately, this leads to extremely unethical breeding and animal rearing practices.
Some dogs are bred for profit without regard to hereditary diseases. This can result in extremely sickly offspring raised in overcrowded and unethical conditions.
If possible, avoid encouraging this trade by purchasing a pet from adoption centers or from your local Humane Society. Avoid pet retailers or dealers, unless you are familiar with their animal breeding practices.
Clean Up After your Pet
One of the most infuriating experiences you can have is stepping in dog poop on the street or at the park. It is extremely important for you to prioritize poop cleanup once your dog uses the restroom outside. You can even encounter steep fines by local authorities if you are caught not cleaning up after your dog.
When you go to the grocery store to purchase poop bags, keep in mind that bags used for cleaning up after your dog can actually do quite a bit of harm to the environment if they are not biodegradable. Search for eco-friendly bags that will be able to break down and decompose in the trash. That way, you don’t have to feel guilty every time you bag up your pet’s waste. Keep your purse or pockets well stocked with these bags whenever you go take the dog for a walk.
When you pick up the latest chew toy or catnip mouse for your pet, examine the product description and packaging to make sure it is reasonably eco-friendly. While you’ll be making use of these items in the immediate future, they’ll eventually wear out or get lost. You don’t want to worry about your pet’s toys sitting around in a landfill for the next few decades. Recyclable toys are becoming even more popular in pet stores, so keep an eye out for these options.
Change Household Cleaners
Switching to natural, eco-friendly home cleaners helps you cut down on damage to the planet while keeping your pet safe. Many of the chemicals in mainstream cleaning brands are toxic to animals.
If you must hang on to chemical cleaners, keep them tucked away in a cabinet on a high shelf. This way, your pets won’t be able to taste these dangerous cleaners in case they spill or are left open.
Search your grocery store for natural alternatives, which can pose less of a risk to your pets.
Cat litter can be notoriously bad for the environment, especially since consumers run through so much of it trying to keep litter boxes clean. If you’re a cat owner, chances are you go through dozens of pounds each month.
Some cat litters are made out of materials like recycled newspaper or pine, which are less harmful to wildlife and the environment.
As a pet owner, you will go through a variety of resources to keep your animal healthy. It’s important to consider the long-term consequences of your purchases, since they can affect ecosystems or even harm your pet. Mindful purchases can keep your family and planet safe.