Our furry friends give us plenty of love and affection but can also cause lots of household waste! Here, Scott Hawthorne from SkipsAndBins.com shares tips for reducing your pet’s carbon pawprint.
In this article, we discuss 5 simple ways that you can quickly reduce your carbon footprint in your home by taking a look at a few products and routines that you maybe doing with your canine friends. It maybe that you are already doing all of this, if so a pat on the back to you for making a positive change!
We’re all trying to do our bit to help tackle climate change. While you might have made a few swaps to help lower your carbon footprint, have you considered your pet’s effect on the environment?
Everything from their food to their toys can impact the planet. Luckily, you can make a few simple swaps to help lower your pet’s carbon pawprint, and I’ll be discussing them below.
5. Switch to eco-conscious food
What pet doesn’t love mealtimes? But did you know that the food you choose for your pet could impact the environment? Meat like beef can take a lot of energy and land to the rear and produce large amounts of fossil fuels. Likely, your pet isn’t too fussy about what they eat, so it can be a good idea to switch to proteins with a lower carbon footprint, such as fish and poultry.
Most pet food brands also come in plastic packaging, which can spend hundreds of years in a landfill if it isn’t recyclable. To reduce your pet’s carbon pawprint, look for products made from recyclable or compostable packaging, such as those made from paper or cardboard.
Alternatively, you could consider shopping at a local zero-waste pet food refill station. These allow you to take along your containers and fill them up, so you don’t have to deal with unnecessary packaging.
4. Choose homemade or eco-friendly toys
After countless hours of playtime, your pet’s plastic toys will eventually become damaged and need to be thrown away. The plastics used for pet toys can’t be recycled, which means they’ll be sent to landfills, and some toys can contain chemicals that can harm the environment.
For example, several plastics contain the chemical bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates that can enter the environment and harm wildlife as they break down.
For more eco-friendly versions, look for pet toys that say BPA-free, phthalate-free, or non-toxic, as these will be better for the environment. Look for toys made from eco-friendly and recyclable materials, such as those made from hemp, wool, or bamboo.
Of course, you could also consider making your toys for your pets. For example, you can make a tug toy from old towels or T-shirts.
3. Pick products made to last
You no doubt want your furry friends to have the very best, and buying high-quality products made to last isn’t just a great way to treat them because they’ll also be much better for the environment. These items will help lower carbon pawprint as they’re more likely to last longer than cheaply made, lower-quality accessories.
Often, handmade items have been produced with more care and attention to detail, so look for accessories that have been crafted by hand. Metal and ceramic bowls are much more eco-friendly than plastic versions, as they’re bound to last a long time. Pet beds made from high-quality materials are also a good option, as are well-made kennels.
2. Stay local for your walks
Rather than travelling in the car to visit somewhere out of town, why not stay local? Local walks are a great way to reduce your fossil fuel consumption and give you a great excuse to explore somewhere new that might be just on your doorstep!
Going on a walk can be an excellent way for you and your furry friends to get some exercise.
1. Change to compostable waste products
While you’re out on your walk, you must always pick up your pet’s waste and dispose of it correctly, but many commercially available waste bags aren’t biodegradable. This means that, after they’re put in the bin, they end up in a landfill and can’t break down, so they’ll stay there for hundreds of years.
Instead of your usual plastic waste bags, look for compostable options made from corn starch, vegetable oils, or biodegradable plastics. These will naturally decompose once they reach the landfill, so they’ll cut down your pet’s carbon pawprint.
If you have a cat, cat litter is an essential item on your shopping list. However, some cat litters contain clay or silica sourced through strip and sand mining, which damages ecosystems and can pollute water sources. Plus, they’re often sent to landfills, where they’ll take a long time to break down.
Biodegradable cat litter is a great alternative. These are usually made from plant-based materials such as wood fibre or recycled paper, so they’ll break down much quicker in a landfill. Most big brands offer biodegradable options, and you can buy them in any pet supplies store.
Although they’re only small, your pets can have a significant impact on the environment. By making a few of these changes, you can help to cut down their carbon pawprint.