Handy tips for dog owners ahead of Earth Day.
In recent years, sustainability has become more of a consideration in many aspects of our lives, including pet ownership. Most of us are aware of the many positive impacts a pet can have on your life, but it can also have a significant impact on the environment - dog food production alone is responsible for an estimated 106 million tonnes of CO2 waste every year, equivalent to a year’s worth of driving from 21 million cars.
Luckily, many of the sustainable changes you can make to your routine as a pet owner are easier to implement than you'd think - simply opting for dry food over wet and using compostable poo bags can make a real difference.
If you're looking to make a few easy changes, Irish pet nutrition company Blue Pet Co. and climate expert Fionnuala Moran have compiled this list of sustainable tips for dog owners. Perfect for putting into practice ahead of Earth Day (22nd April) or any time of the year, really.
Caring for our pets with products from fabulous Irish sustainable businesses like Blue Pet Co. saves on emissions from air miles induced by shipping in foreign products. Every €10 spent locally generates €50 for the economy, which is another upside that will help to keep our communities thriving.
Dry Food vs Wet
Feeding our dogs sustainably made dry food instead of wet food significantly reduces the emissions incurred by our furry friends’ diets. We can go a step further by including some nice crunchy vegetables for them to somewhat reduce their meat consumption and, in turn, their carbon pawprint.
Opting for biodegradable or compostable dog poo bags is one way to lessen the single-use plastic impact of having a pet. Dog poo that isn’t picked up can leech bacteria, parasites and even any medication they may be taking into our water systems, harming ecosystems and aquatic life. With this in mind, perhaps we can go the extra mile and pick up additional poops we spy while dealing with our own doggy’s droppings.
Working reuse and recycle into playtime
Reuse and recycle are key sustainability concepts. Keep an eye out for toys made out of recycled materials, which are becoming more available. Or you could even get creative making some yourself - think tug of war ropes by tying knots in strong old towels or snuffle mats out of old cloths, t-shirts or socks. Reuse old cardboard boxes by adding Blue Pet Co. supplements hidden in leftover scrunched-up paper to provide foraging fun.
Adopt Don't Shop
We’re getting very good at sourcing secondhand clothing and homewares as we become more sustainably minded, but consider finding your four-legged bestie secondhand too. Ireland’s rescues are overflowing with angels who’ve ended up in them through no fault of their own, waiting to be adopted, like my two Salukis: Farrah and Alfie! Spaying and neutering can also be a responsible way to make the population of our beloved pooches more sustainable, saving many pups from ending up in the pound or rescues.
Blue Pet Co. specialises in clean, marine-powered dog supplements enriched with seaweed extracts, designed to meet a dog’s health needs naturally and sustainably. You can find out more and purchase a few treats for your pup via their website.
Header image via Blue Pet Co.