5 Ways To Go Green With Your Cat
You recycle, buy organic, and use eco-friendly green products for yourself, so why not make similar choices for your cat? Going green is not only better for your cat’s health, it’s also good for the planet.
You can also help the planet by making choices for your cat that will not only benefit the planet, but will also keep your cat healthy.
- Natural cleaning products
Most commercial household cleaners contain hazardous ingredients such as organic solvents and petroleum based chemicals. Some of these are known to cause cancer in animals and are suspected human carcinogens. In particular, Lysol, Pine-sol and other products containing phenols are deadly to cats as they can cause severe liver damage. Chlorox bleach, especially when concentrated, can cause chemical burns when it comes in contact with sensitive cat paws.
Use pet-friendly cleaning products with natural ingredients instead. A word of caution: steer clear of natural cleaning products that contain essential oils. They can be harmful to cats.
- Whole, organic food
Look for premium foods, preferably organic, that use meats that are raised in sustainable, humane ways without added drugs or hormones. Certified-organic pet foods must meet strict USDA standards that spell out how ingredients are produced and processed, which means no pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, artificial preservatives, artificial ingredients or genetically engineered ingredients.
- Eco-friendly cat litter
Clay is strip-mined, which is bad for the planet, and clay litter contains silica, which is a known carcinogenic. If your cat will accept one of the alternatives to clay litter such as corn, wheat or pine-based litters, make the switch. Always switch litter gradually, and always provide at least one litter box with the litter your cat is used to until you know your cat is accepting the new litter. Going green is not worth risking having your cat avoid the litter box.
- Chemical free pest and parasite control
Many of the flea and tick treatments available today contain toxic chemicals that can be hazardous to pets and to people. Even when used according to the manufacturer’s directions, these chemicals can create problems for cats and the humans handling the product. Look into natural and safer options to control parasites.
- Avoid lawn chemicals
Lawn chemicals are bad for the environment, and they don’t just affect outdoor cats. An EPA funded study in 2001 found that chemicals used in herbicides are easily tracked indoors, contaminating the air and surfaces inside residences and exposing children and pets at levels ten times higher than pre-application levels.
Going green is a win-win: your cats will be healthier, and you will help make a positive impact on the environment.
Ingrid King is the award-winning author of Buckley’s Story: Lessons from a Feline Master Teacher, Purrs of Wisdom: Conscious Living, Feline Style, and Adventures in Veterinary Medicine: What Working in Veterinary Hospitals Taught Me About Life, Love and Myself. She is a former veterinary hospital manager turned writer. Her popular blog, The Conscious Cat, is a comprehensive resource for conscious living, health, and happiness for cats and their humans. The Conscious Cat has won multiple awards. For more information about Ingrid, please visit ConsciousCat.com.
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