How Can I Reduce My Dog's Environmental Pawprint?

Angela Vuckovic
by Angela Vuckovic

In today’s day and age, with the climate and environment at great risk, we want to do anything we can to minimize our own carbon footprint and the damage we do to Mother Nature. Of course, our pets also have an environmental impact – and eco-conscious pet parents are always on the lookout for simple ways to reduce their pet’s carbon footprint (or pawprint if we’re being precise). Luckily, there are a lot of small but important steps that you can take in order to make your pet’s lifestyle and care much more eco-friendly without compromising the quality of life they are used to. Here's where to start if you want to become a more eco-friendly, sustainable dog owner!

5 Ways You Can Reduce Your Dog's Environmental Pawprint

Caring for your pet can be challenging, and that’s no secret. However, the things that make it easier are not often very good for the environment, and can make your pet’s environmental pawprint significant. Luckily, it does not take too much of a change to turn that completely around and start improving that environmental impact, day by day. What follows are just a few of the basic steps you can take as a caring and responsible owner.

#1 Be Responsible About Your Pet’s Waste Disposal:

Improperly disposed of waste can be quite harmful to the environment. A major cause of this is cheap poop bags that are made from plastic and are not disposed of properly. If you are looking to make a change, this can be the perfect small start. Purchase  eco-friendly poop bags made from recycled plastic, or opt for  bags that can be composted. So, if you haven’t thought about your pet’s poop before, now is the time to start.

#2 Opt for High-Quality Accessories:

When you opt for high-quality accessories and gear, you are opting for things that will last longer. This can range from dog leashes, vests, shoes, collars, crates, and even toys. And when these are high quality, it means that you will have to replace them less frequently. In the long run, this is environmentally friendly. And if it is made from natural or recycled materials – all the better!

#3 Consider Eco-Friendly Dog Toys and Accessories:

Dog toys are often bought on a whim and quickly disregarded. But stop and think – they are usually made from plastic, which definitely isn’t durable enough to be considered eco-friendly. Luckily, you can now opt for  dog toys that are made from recycled or completely natural materials, which will definitely be better for the environment. The same goes for accessories such as leashes, collars, or blankets, which can be upcycled, or made from sustainable natural materials such as hemp. 

#4 You Choose Which Brands to Support:

At the end of the day, you choose which pet brands you are going to support. Are you going to opt for the cheap and nationwide run-of-the-mill superbrand? Or are you going to place your trust in the local eco-friendly upstart brand? The choice is what sets you and your pet apart and helps reduce your pawprint.

#5 Spay or Neuter Your Pet:

You might be wondering how this relates to the environment, but the answer can be quite straightforward. The harsh truth is that hundreds of thousands of unwanted pets and strays are euthanized each year, many unable to find a home after years. Pet overpopulation continually leads to increased waste in the world, as well as those pesky carbon emissions. As more and more owners are aware of this,  neutering their pets can help prevent unwanted litters and subsequently, the animals that end up in shelters or on the streets.

Many of these changes might sound small. But many small changes collectively make a huge difference for the environment. So start with these small steps for reducing your dog’s pawprint, and in no time, you can safely say that your pooch’s eco pawprint is all but nonexistent – and your effort will pay off.

Angela Vuckovic
Angela Vuckovic

A proud mama to seven dogs and ten cats, Angela spends her days writing for her fellow pet parents and pampering her furballs, all of whom are rescues. When she's not gushing over her adorable cats or playing with her dogs, she can be found curled up with a good fantasy book.

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