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Reducing your pet’s paw print

Published: Wednesday, April 2, 2014 12:12 a.m. CDT

We’ve all heard about reducing our carbon footprint, but what about our pets’ paw print?

Here are five things that anyone can do:

• Purchase eco-friendly gifts made from recycled materials or sustainable fibers such as hemp.

• Protect native wildlife – keep your cat indoors. Cats are hunters. After habitat destruction, the biggest threats to birds are domesticated cats. 

• Feed them natural or organic pet food and treats. Natural and organic pet foods are minimally processed and contain meats that are raised sustainably.

• Put number two in its place. Don’t leave pet waste on the ground so it gets into our water system. Instead pick it with a biodegradable poop bag so it doesn’t live in a landfill taking up to 100 years to decompose. And cat owners should steer clear of clumping clay litters. The clay is strip-mined, which is harmful to the environment.

• Buy a “recycled” pet – adopt from a shelter. One of the best things you can do (and one of the most humane) is to purchase a “recycled pet.” Please consider going to a local shelter or rescue.

– Source: Environmental Defenders of McHenry County

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