As a pet owner, knowing which products are best for your pet can be a challenge. There are countless brands to choose from, and many product manufacturers try to deceive you with misleading labels and confusing ingredient lists. If you are looking for sustainable, environmentally-friendly pet products, trying to determine which ingredients are good for both your pet and the environment can make the process even more complicated.
Fortunately, healthy and sustainable pet products do exist – you just have to know what to look for. Read on to learn about what products and ingredients you should look out for when shopping for common pet products.
Healthy Pet Food
Pet food is a necessity for every animal owner, and the type you buy could have a big impact on both your pet’s overall health as well as your carbon footprint. Because pet food isn’t held to the same FDA standards as human food, it often has harmful byproducts that are easily overlooked on ingredient lists. Feeding pets also creates about 64 million tons of carbon dioxide each year, and meat and corn production are incredibly environmentally taxing.
When buying cat or dog food, look for products labeled “natural” or “organic.” Natural pet foods only contain ingredients that come from plants, animals and mined sources, and organic pet foods are produced without artificial fertilizers and pesticides. It is also important to buy foods that are grain-free or contain only whole grains. These products are better for your dog’s digestive system, and they do not include environmentally harmful ingredients made from corn.
It can be tempting to buy cheap, plastic toys if your pets are particularly destructive. However, toys that contain PVC or BPA can harm your pets if accidentally consumed, and they are incredibly harmful to the environment after you throw them away.
Before you buy your pet a new toy, be sure to check the packaging. Avoid products that contain harmful materials like PVC and BPA, and look for toys made from biodegradable or recycled materials.
You can find environmentally-safe toys online or at pet supply retailers. Check for seasonal sales and take advantage of PetSmart coupons to score the best deals for your fur-family.
Non-Toxic Food and Water Bowls
Your pet’s food bowl is almost as important as the food you choose to put in it. Plastic bowls often contain the same harmful materials as cheap plastic toys, and they can easily harbor mold and bacteria.
Rather than put your pet’s health and the planet at risk, look for food and water bowls made from durable, eco-friendly materials like bamboo. Stainless steel is also a good option if you are looking for something that will last forever, is easy to clean and is made from recyclable materials.
Sustainable Pet Beds
It is important to give your pet a comfortable place to sleep, especially if they are not allowed on the furniture or you have uncarpeted floors. However, a lot of the materials commonly found in pet beds are not sustainably sourced and can harm your pet if consumed.
Avoid pet beds and blankets that contain synthetic materials whenever possible, and look for products made from recycled or organic materials. Some good materials to look for include organic cotton, hemp and down.
Next time you head to your local pet store or browse for products online, be sure to check the labels and ingredient lists to ensure that what you are buying is best for your pet and the planet. Green pet products may cost more upfront, but they are almost always better quality and will save money on pet supplies in the long run.
To help with the process, use this eco-friendly pet essentials printable checklist on your shopping trip!