Green living - Eco-friendly Dog Care

Lots of people think that "green living" is a complicated thing requiring a lot of time and dedication. This simply is not true. Some easy ways to reduce environmental impact include using reusable grocery bags rather than plastic or paper, switching to organic cleaning products, using energy efficient light bulbs (CFLs), and buying local.

Adopting an environmentally friendly lifestyle doesn’t need to stop with you. It’s easy to implement green living practices into your dog’s care. Here are some suggestions:

  • Feed sustainably produced and organic dog foods. The Whole Dog Journal offers an excellent review of commercial dog foods including steps that the companies are taking to reduce their environmental impact.

  • Pick-up after your dog. Dog droppings can introduce parasites and toxins into the environment which can contaminate a stream or field just as human or livestock waste can. When picking-up after your dog use biodegradable bags. These bags will breakdown faster allowing their contents to do the same.

  • Choose natural cleaners for your household as well as for your dog. Reducing the chemicals in your dog’s living space can help reduce allergies and exposure to potentially harmful toxins.

  • Practice organic gardening and avoid the use of chemicals and pesticides in the yard and garden. This will limit your exposure as well as your dogs exposure to harmful toxins. Click here for more information on dog friendly gardening.
  • For flea control rather than resorting to potentially harmful chemicals try adding brewer’s yeast to your dog’s food. Animals that eat brewer’s yeast do not taste good to fleas.

  • Wash your dog less. Over shampooing can lead to dry skin and itchiness. Less frequent washing helps conserve water.

  • Recycle or re-use packaging whenever possible.

  • Buy eco-friendly pet products. Your dog may not be concerned about global warming and deforestation but it’s become clear that many dog owners are. This has resulted in more options for eco-friendly pet products including organic dog beds, organic dog food and treats, and biodegradable poop bags. Even dog toys are going green. Manufacturers are using materials for toys that are non-toxic and recyclable. There are soft toys made of organically grown fibers and colored with natural dyes. Check some of these out the next time you are in the market for a new toy or treat for your four-legged friend.

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