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You care about greenhouse gases and your carbon footprint. What about your companion’s carbon pawprint? Is your furry friend living a green, eco-friendly life? April 22nd is Earth Day. What can you do this Earth Day to make sure that your companions are living green too?

Waste Management
Anyone who has ever had a companion knows that they create lots of waste. It is estimated that 10 million tons of waste from our furry friends fill landfills yearly. What can be done?  Instead of using plastic bags to pick up and dispose of your dog’s waste, try using recycled biodegradable poop bags. If you have a cat, switch from a clay-based litter to an unscented biodegradable litter to cut down on the estimated 2 million tons of clay litter that end up in landfills yearly.

Give A Hoot, Don’t Pollute
Always pick-up after your companion and follow the backpacker’s motto of leaving only footprints behind. Besides being inconsiderate, leaving your companion’s waste behind can pollute water sources when runoff washes into streams and lakes.

Buy Green
Purchase beds, furniture and toys made from recycled or sustainable materials such as hemp. Environmentally friendly hemp can be used to make almost everything, like leashes, collars, beds and toys.

Buy Extra Food
Buying your regular companion’s food in greater volume not only saves money, it also conserves fuel and lowers emissions by saving you extra trips to the store.

Pet Overpopulation
Make sure your cat and/or dog isn’t adding to the over-population problem by having your companions spayed or neutered.

Adopt a Shelter Animal

Don’t forget about your local animal shelter if you are thinking about getting a furry friend. There are lots of companions that need a good home. While adopting one of these deserving animals may not lower emissions or save fuel, it can save a life.

By adopting these simple tips, you and your furry friend can live green and make the planet a better place.

By Dr. Ruth MacPete, DVM

If you have any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian – they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your companions.

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