How Green Is Your Doggie
Us humans are only just getting used to the idea of leading an ‘eco-friendly’ lifestyle, but our dogs have been trying to show us how to do this for years. How many times have they tried to recycle your shoes into a new and interesting chew toy? They’ve been demonstrating waste renewal for years whether it be cracking open the garbage bin to get at all that tasty smelly stuff, utilising the backyard and exploring the wonders of gardening or even just checking out the nutrient value of their own poo. We just haven’t been paying enough attention. But it’s time to follow their lead and help them continue their good work.
You can start by adopting your pet from an animal shelter of which, unfortunately, there are way too many. Pet shops are supplied by puppy mills and backyard breeders, which I won’t go into now.
Once you have your wonderful new family member, get him or her de-sexed. This will not only reduce the number of abandoned and homeless dogs being killed at a shocking rate, it will also help them live longer and healthier lives by eliminating the possibility of uterine, ovarian, and testicular cancer, and decreasing the incidence of prostate disease.
Don’t feed your dog junk, and this includes a lot of so called ‘premium dog foods’ on the market, which consist of reconstituted animal by-products, otherwise known as low-grade wastes from the beef and poultry industries. Animals used to make many pet foods are classified as “4-D,” which is really a polite way of saying “Dead, Dying, Diseased, or Down (Disabled)” when they line up at the slaughterhouse. Natural and organic pet foods use sustainable and human grade meat free from added antibiotics, hormones and artificial preservatives. Organic pet foods go one step further and eliminate the use of pesticides and genetically engineered ingredients.
Biodegradable poo bags are essential. I personally would prefer to see mounds of poo on my nature strip than permanently embalmed poo in old plastic bags. Why take a perfectly decomposable substance and encase it in something that is not? Or go one step further and compost your pet poo - just don’t use it with your vegetable garden, because the compost doesn’t heat up enough to kill pathogens such as E. coli. which could contaminate your homegrown produce and land up in your (very unhappy) belly.
So don’t ignore your dogs’ requests for a greener lifestyle, start small and work from there. More and more products are becoming available which allow you and your dog to join in the campaign to reduce your carbon footprint, and also lead a healthier, more sustainable lifestyle. They may cost a bit more, but if someone told you that keeping the planet clean was going to be cheap they were telling itty-bitty lies.