Earth Day is just around the corner. Let’s take a moment to talk about the carbon paw-print our pets leave behind and how you can go green with your pets. Just like humans, pets impact the amount of carbon emitted back into the atmosphere from a variety of sources such as pet food factories.

Buying and living eco-friendly has become more of a daily concern, and you may have started to wonder how you can help. Here are 7 simple ways to start going green with your pet.

7 Simple Ways to Go Green

Don’t toss! Donate!

Gently used pet supplies such as blankets, toys, and litter pans can make a world of difference to a local animal shelter or rescue group. Donating also helps to keep excess items out of our landfills. Many of these groups will even take old newspapers or cardboard boxes off your hands.

Buy recycled!

Consider buying toys and bedding made out of recycled materials. Did you know that many collars and leashes are now made from hemp, bamboo or other recycled products? Even fire hoses!

Celebrate Earth Day and Go Green with Your Pets | SAGE: Centers for Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Care

Photo by Ryan Dempsey

Dog Patch SF: A San Francisco company that turns used climbing rope into leashes for rescue pups. “Ropes For Rescues allows each person who donates rope to Dog Patch SF to choose a favorite dog rescue, which then receives 20 percent of the leashes the company makes from that particular rope. Each leash comes with a card naming the donor, where they used the rope to climb, and the animal rescue they chose. ” Read More >

The Spotted Door: Collars crafted from decommissioned fire hoses. 10% of the proceeds are donated back to Chicago Fire Department. Read More > 

Or if you are crafty…

Make your own toys from old T-Shirts or stuffed animals from around the house.Celebrate Earth Day and Go Green with Your Pets | SAGE: Centers for Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Care

DIY Tug Dog Toy Instructions

Recycle!

Make sure to recycle those food cans! And did you know that buying in bulk saves on the amount of packaging used?

Scoop it right!

Plastic bags can take hundreds of years to decompose. Try biodegradable poop bags for your pooch, which break down naturally over time. And for the cat in your life, consider using environmentally-friendly kitty litters that are plant-based or made from recycled paper products.

Go for that natural look!

Use a towel or air-dry your dog after a refreshing bath instead of plugging in an electric hairdryer.

Take a walk!

The sun is starting to shine more and more. Instead of driving to the dog park, take an extra long walk and enjoy the fresh air.

Not every option is right for every pet family, but even the smallest change can have a big impact on our environment. How will you and your pet go green?