Healthy Green Pets

Man’s best friends need some love and advocacy from their human friends. Fortunately, there are a number of ways human moms and dads (or owners if you must) can look out for and take action on behalf of their pets. Eddie and the Pets for the Environment, a dog on a mission to educate humans and the government about toxic chemical reform legislation, shares a long list of ways that pet owners can help reduce their animal friends’ exposure to dangerous chemicals and potential disease; some notable changes include:

1. Feed Fido Organic Foods. Go organic and choose pet food that is free of BHA, BHT and ethoxyquin. Likewise, refrain from feeding your furry friends any foods that contain artificial sweeteners, onions, chocolate, yeast, nuts, coffee, and spoiled items. We had great ideas in this post last week by Sommer.

2. Shoes off! Take your shoes off at the door. Shoes off is practically a mantra in my house. By wearing our shoes indoors we expose our pets and children to petrol, pesticides, herbicides, lead, and other chemicals that we track into our homes from outside. To learn more about the health advantages of leaving your shoes at the door and preventing lead poisoning in your pets and children, visit Dr. Ben Kim.

3. Grow an organic lawn. By pulling weeds from your lawn with your own two hands and refraining from pesticide and herbicide use, you are preventing your pets (and children) from ingesting nasty chemicals that can cause nervous system problems as well as cancer.

4. Go au-natural. When selecting safe, healthy, and environmentally friendly kitty litter, look for plant based litters made from natural sources like wheat, wood, and newspaper. Not only does clay based litter come from strip mining, but when your cat, dog, and other furry friends ingest clay litter, they may suffer from depressed immunity, respiratory distress, irritable bowel and diarrhea, as well as vomiting and death.

5. Nurture Healthy Play. Tossing a ball to your cat and dog can add up to hours of fun and bonding. Make sure that the toy your pet is fetching and chewing on is chemical free. Remember the BPA scare in baby bottles and toys? Many pet toys are also made from plastics that may contain unsafe chemicals. Before you bring a new toy home, check to see what plastics and paints were used to make it. Better yet, research chemical free and organic pet toys.

To read more about creating a healthy green home for your pet, visit Eddie and the Pets for the Environment.

Greening your pet’s lifestyle and home is as easy as playing fetch. Creating a healthy and environmental home and lifestyle for your family’s favorite pet(s) is an invaluable way to show your animal that you love and care for him or her. As always, we’d love to hear your thoughts about ways to protect and enhance our furry friends’ lives.

Jessica Monte also blogs about natural parenting and the environment at Green Mamma and API Speaks.

Original 5 Minutes for Going Green post.

6 Responses to Healthy Green Pets
  1. Jennifer (The Smart Mama)
    August 29, 2008 | 3:44 pm

    We just adopted a dog 10 or so days ago from the local shelter. I was buying dog food and dog toys, and shocked at the crap sold as dog food and toys for pets! Vinyl toys for dogs – vinyl is bad from manufacture to disposal – and the vinyl dog toys just smelled awful. I really wanted to buy some and test for lead using my XRF analyzer, but also didn’t want to encourage any more vinyl toys.


  2. Sommer (Green and Clean Mom)
    August 29, 2008 | 5:33 pm

    Great post. I’ve reused some of my children’s stuffed toys and teethers that I’ve dog proofed for safety. No lose tags, buttons for eyes, etc.

  3. Jessica (Surely You Nest)
    August 30, 2008 | 12:50 pm

    Great post! Animals are just as susceptible to enviro toxins as children, bz of their size and how close to the ground they are. What do you think about flea and tick treatments? I am concerned about what’s in them but also worry about Lyme disease in our area.

  4. Jessica
    August 31, 2008 | 7:51 am

    Jennifer, so far as pet toys go, there are many, many organic pet toys available on the internet and I’d imagine, in specialty stores. I totally agree with you . . . I wouldn’t want to encourage vinyl toy production either.

    Sommer, reusing our kids’ toys is also a great way to ensure that our pets are playing safe, and it also helps reduce consumption and waste. Great idea!

    Jessica, I have to be honest. We have an indoor cat and my experience with flea and tick treatments is limited. But if you live in certain metro areas, I am pretty sure that you can find an all natural and holistic veterinarian who can recommend safe and low toxin treatments. When I looked at homeopathic pet care web-sites, pet owners and vets discussed the effects of diet as causation for flea problems. Some suggested feeding pets a RAW diet to alleviate or prevent fleas. If you learn of other ways to naturally prevent fleas and ticks, I’d love to hear more.

  5. Kerri Anne
    September 2, 2008 | 12:40 am

    I wanted to chime in to say that my husband and I and our one-year-old (yesterday!) pug Iggy live in a metro area, and we did go with the holistic, “less is more” approach to shots and flea and tick prevention. So far so good, and Iggy is quite healthy and happy.

    We have also fed him Origen since he was a puppy, which was a brand of organic dog food catered for all ages of dogs recommended by a local dog shop. It leaves him satisfied, energized, and does wonders for softening his coat. We are big fans.

  6. allie
    May 28, 2010 | 12:25 pm

    such a cute puppy tell me when you sell some