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Picture of a biodegradable dog poop bag dispenser on a fence.

Just like humans, pets also have a carbon footprint. Consequently, all pet owners are responsible for reducing waste and becoming more sustainable global citizens. Here are six ways you can show the planet the same love as you do your pets.

1. Purchase biodegradable products If you own a feline, avoid purchasing cat litters made of sodium bentonite. Instead, choose products made with natural and biodegradable substances, like wheat, corn, shredded paper and wood shavings. Moreover, never flush cat litter down the toilet. If you have a dog, look for compostable poo bags to reduce the amount of plastic you toss in the landfill. 2. Move to more sustainable food Due to the negative environmental impact of eating red meat, more people are adopting vegetarian and vegan diets, and your dog can, too. Like humans, dogs are omnivores and can get their protein from plant-based sources. Fortunately, there are several vegetarian dog foods on the market. On the other hand, cats are carnivores and require a meat-based diet. Consequently, look for cat food made from offal, meat-by products or rabbit. These are more sustainable sources than red meat or fish. However, it’s best to schedule a nutrition consultation with your veterinarian to ensure your pet gets a balanced diet. Additionally, don’t overfeed your furry friend. On top of being wasteful, it can also lead to pet obesity, a widespread health problem in North American pets. 3. Reduce plastic and upcycle The pet industry is full of plastic materials. Therefore, choose products made with natural materials like wood, cotton and wool and items that don’t have excessive plastic packaging. For example, avoid plastic food bowls, grooming products and toys. Instead, upcycle household items (see our DIY toy ideas) or shop in second-hand stores. 4. Go chemical-free Use soaps made with natural ingredients when bathing your dog or cat. Stay away from products with harmful chemicals that could irritate their skin and pollute the water. Furthermore, keep an eye out for cruelty-free and sustainable brands that come in recyclable or reusable packaging. 5. Don’t drive with your pet everywhere If you are going to your pet favourite play destination, why not walk instead of drive? Walking will give you both plenty of exercise and keep your gas guzzler in the garage. Additionally, please don’t go out at dusk or dawn. It will give your local wildlife a better chance to thrive by avoiding any unfortunate encounters. 6. Adopt and spay and neuter your pets If you’re thinking about getting a pet, millions of homeless animals are up for adoption at animal shelters and are at risk of being euthanized. Why spend more resources bringing another animal into the world when there are so many here already that need a loving home? In addition, make sure to spay and neuter your pets to avoid unwanted litters that’ll only add to animal overpopulation. Affordable vet services in Toronto At Bellamy-Lawrence Animal Hospital, we want what’s best for your pet and the planet. We offer a variety of sustainable pet products in our online store and offer many preventative health services to keep your furry friend happy and healthy. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with a veterinarian.

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