March 20, 2009

Go Green With Your Pets This Spring!

Today it's officially Spring! And it's the perfect time to bring in this new, fresh season with a new sustainable lifestyle for you and your pets! We all love our furry friends to pieces and only want the best for them, so shouldn't they have the benefit of a natural and organic lifestyle as well?

Nowadays there are so many eco-friendly products available for our beloved pets, it's super easy to make the eco-switch. To help get you started, Eco-Pup has compiled a list of 5 easy things you can do to go green with your pets this Spring.

Happy Spring!!

BYOPC (Be Your Own Pet Chef)
With a shocking amount of pet (and human) food recalls lately, people are becoming more aware and cautious about what they are feeding their pets. Even though the ingredients may not have "mechanically separated" as part of the meat description, unless it's FDA certified food grade meat (safe for human consumption) you could be feeding them things like ground up diseased animal parts. Typically most pet food companies use very low D-grade meat (or lower!). To ease your mind about what exactly is going into your pet's little body, why not be your own pet chef? Now, you're probably wondering when the heck you'll have time to make all of this pet food, but I assure you it's not as time consuming as you think. And it's a lot of fun, as you can give your pets some taste tests, or let them lick the bowl when you're done! I began making my 2 senior dogs their own food just over a year ago now and I won't go back to store bought food for several reasons - after a year of their diet change, their vet checkup/blood test results were amazingly better than the previous year when they were on store bought food. They also have a lot more energy and their coats are more beautiful and healthy looking. Need some recipe ideas? There's a wealth of knowledge at your local library (check in the pet section) as well as on the internet: e-Healthy Pet Food All Natural Dog Treats Dog Food Recipes @ Cat Food and Treats Recipes Don't want to do all the baking? No worries - you can also try these great homemade dog treats at From Stewart's Kitchen - they're all homemade to order with love!

Squeaky clean, naturally!
Another thing you need to do often for your pets (moreso the doggies in our lives than the cats) is keeping them clean. Many beauty products contain harmful substances such as parabens, sodium lauryl sulfates, cocomide DEA, cocomide MEA, TEA lauryl sulfate and propylene glycol - things you wouldn't want to put on your skin nor your pet's! Not only can these chemicals be very irritating on the skin, they can contribute to a range of cancers as well. So, next time you go to suds up fido, reach for a gentle (and great smelling) bottle of something natural from Happytails Spa, Grooming and Wellness products. We love their 'Itchin For Relief' spray and their wide range of all natural, detergent-free shampoos & conditioners!

Another must-do duty of being a pet owner is cleaning up after your pup outside, and keeping Mr. Meow's litter box fresh. While we all know this isn't a very pleasant task, we can get some satisfaction and peace of mind knowing that by using biodegradable poop bags for the waste we are significantly reducing the amount of regular plastic bags that take hundreds of years to break down. You can also flush the poop down the toilet however, never flush the litter down the drain - only the scooped poop!! Another option is to compost the waste by burying it in the backyard or a flower bed. NEVER EVER compost dog or cat waste in your vegetable garden (or anywhere remotely close to it) as the feces contain a lot of very harmful bacteria such as e-coli. This can be very dangerous, if not fatal, to humans if consumed.
Another product we really like are these Simple Solutions Natural Biodegradable Puppy Training Pads - perfect for your new little fuzzy friend or for your senior pets!

Organic Play
There is a huge variety of recycled and organic toys for your pets available in pretty much any store nowadays. Since the majority of toys (especially plastic toys) are made in China, there's a very high chance that they will contain harmful chemicals like lead. Let your pets go crazy with these fair trade 'A Cheerful Pet Tugeez Dog Toys' made of 100% natural wool and cuddle (or chew!) these cute 'Simply Fido Organic Plush Toys'. And for the kitties we love these adorable 'Maggie's Mice Organic Catnip Toys'.

Recycle - Adopt a Pet!
Pet Adoption
One of the best things you can do for our planet and our homeless furry friends is to Recycle and adopt a pet! There are hundreds of animals who are in need of a caring home at your local shelter. You can check out, an on-line searchable database of animals that need homes. Petfinder is also a directory of over 10,000 animal shelters and adoption organizations across the USA, Canada and Mexico.

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