Everyone is talking about reducing their plastic consumption in cosmetics, household goods, cleaning supplies but what about your pet’s plastic waste? More and more cities are jumping on board by eliminating single-use plastic bags, and we are all over that but what about those nasty poop bags you see hanging from trees and all over our sidewalks and beaches. What about your plastic shampoo bottles that you throw away after using? Or even your dog’s toys that they may destroy in 5 minutes of playing with it? We’ve got some suggestions for you to help your pet go green this 420.
First and foremost, you cannot leave dog poop on the sidewalk. Please pick up after your dog. Dog feces are common carriers of the many diseases including Hookworms, Roundworms, tapeworms, and parvo as well as many others.
Our pup goes when she feels the need – typically this happens when we are out for a nice walk in the park or through our neighborhood. In these examples, most people usually go for their ‘earth-friendly’ plastic poop bag and feel proud thinking they are doing their part in reducing plastic consumption. Well, we have news for you… this is not the case.
The Problem: Micro-plastics with Poop Bags – most poop bags are oxo-biodegradable poop bags. This means that they have an EPI (chemical solution) added to the plastic bag during the manufacturing process which helps it break down. The problem is that this creates Micro-Plastics which get into our groundwater, oceans and kills wildlife. This article from National Geographic explains in detail what micro-plastics do to our planet.
The Solution: Here are your greener options:
- Use a Paper Poop Bag – K9 Clean has a New 100% Compostable Paper Eco Poop Scoop Bag. These bags are not only PLASTIC FREE they have a unique poop scoop technology built into the bag that means you never have to feel that hot poop like you would with a plastic bag. Check out a funny how to use video here.
- Use a dog-waste-only composting bin.
- Bring your dogs waste to an industrial composting facility that accepts pet waste, or hire a waste removal company that does the dirty work for you (for example, Doggie Detail located in the lower mainland of British Columbia).
Talking about what you feed your dog is a very controversial subject in the dog world. This article is meant to help with your choices on a greener option. Whether you feed your pet raw food or dry kibble – you need to search for green packaging.
The Problem: Buying dog food is one of the biggest challenges when trying to go green. My pup loves food, all food and especially people food which I never give her. We are big proponents of feeding our dog raw food. We will go into this another time, but as far as raw goes, we have three options.
- Buy in Bulk – we buy our raw dog food in bulk from Surrey Meat Packers in Cloverdale, B.C. They have a varied range of raw dog food including Chicken & Vegetable, Beef & Vegetable, Tripe and much more. They also have bulk liver treats as well.
- Buy food that has recyclable packaging. This isn’t the ideal situation, but we can help make pet companies more accountable with their packaging if we all buy food that has packaged responsibly. At the very least, they can make an effort on reducing plastic consumption – we as consumers can make a difference.
- Make your own! The vitamins and minerals that dogs need are very different from what we as humans need. Be sure to do your research to make sure you are meeting all the essentials that your pup needs to stay healthy.
The Problem: My Dog Lucy is a chewer, so I try to stick to bones and non-destructive toys that are meant to last. For us, that means tough balls and antlers.
The Solution: Buy toys that are meant to last!
- Chuck-it Balls – what can I say, if you don’t have a Chuckit, you need one. Our dog is a strong chewer, and she manages to kill the squeak in most balls, but the chuck-it ball we bought four years ago is still usable, reusable and it never gets old!
- Antlers – AntlerWorld Dog Products located in Winnipeg has these in bulk and if you aren’t close by to their store locations, good news – they have an online shop as well.
- Tall Tails – This Fun, Durable and Natural Dog Tails are almost indestructible. If you are located in Vancouver, you can find these toys at this cute little pet shop on Cambie Street WoofGang or order it online on the Tall Tails website. The best part is they are made with natural leather and rope. We’re a fan!
The Problem: If your puppy likes to get muddy as mine does, you will need a good dog shampoo or a good groomer! Your Pets Plastic shampoo bottles contribute to the 8 million metric tons of plastic that end up in our oceans. Don’t buy shampoo in the plastic containers.
The Solution: Say no to plastic packaging!
- Make your dog shampoo – there are many natural ingredients and simple recipes you can find online. Just be careful when adding essential oils as many are toxic to dogs and cats!
- Use Zero Waste Dog Shampoo Bars – K9 Cleans New Zero Waste Dog shampoo bars are the best. They have zero plastic, made with all-natural ingredients, soothing on their skin and keep my Dog Lucy smelling fresh and clean. They also fit nicely in your hand – you never have to let go of your dog go as you would when using a plastic bottle. No more letting your pup slip away while washing! Perfect for reducing plastic consumption!
- When taking your pup to the beach or a muddy play in the trails, be sure to use a reusable container instead of a water bottle to rinse off those muddy paws. We use this handy Portable Dog Shower to rinse off our pups paws before getting back into the vehicle or entering the house! Its lasted us for years!
Implementing these small but manageable changes can make a big impact on reducing your pets plastic consumption. If you’ve got some good suggestions or other ideas that you would like to add, please let us know! We would love to hear from you! Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.