Many of us are taking steps to improve our impact on the environment. With these 5 earth-friendly gift ideas your companions ‘paw-print’ can be reduced too.
Kermit the Frog once famously said, “It’s not easy being green.” But times have changed. Now, being green is synonymous with healthy living and care for the planet. The holiday season gives you a wonderful opportunity to include your dog or cat in some green gift giving. After all, they embody the very essence of love and help us connect to the natural world.
Hemp takes the lead
Hemp is the strongest and most durable fiber on earth. That’s why it’s so perfect for dog leads, collars and especially dog and cat toys. Thomas Jefferson and George Washington grew hemp on their plantations. Ben Franklin made hemp paper. The Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution were written on hemp paper. Levi Jeans were originally made from hemp.
An earth friendly plant, hemp is biodegradable and sustainable, and replenishes the soil in which it grows. Fabrics made from hemp are naturally anti-bacterial and mildew-free so they’re safe for your animal to play with and chew on. The Good Dog Company and Earth Dog (www.earthdog.com) are two sources of hemp leashes, collars and toys for dogs and cats.
Animals actually seem to prefer hemp. Perhaps they’re attracted to hemp toys because of all the health benefits the plant contains. Mary Wolff, the owner of Honest Pet Products, bought her two little Yorkies just about every toy she came across but found they loved her cloth-covered coasters. This started her on a journey to create her own pet products, and hemp fit all her requirements. She tested hundreds of toys and found that dogs and cats preferred hemp toys above all others.
Mary took her earth-friendly philosophy a step further when she joined Snow Leopard Enterprises, an organization that supports Central Asian craftspeople so they have no need to kill endangered snow leopards to survive – she sells natural wool toys made by Mongolian craftswomen.
Gift him with comfort
Pet beds are a favorite gift idea this time of year. How about a bed that’s also biodegradable? The Dog Gone Smart Bed is made with all-natural and organic materials, and features a unique NanoSphere finishing technology that was developed in accordance with the criteria of bluesign®, a stringent production standard for Environment, Health and Safety specifications for textiles. NanoSphere uses nanotechnology to permanently transfer the non-stick properties of certain leaves found in nature to the fabric, making it resistant to dirt and water.
Meanwhile, Earth Dog creates washable hemp beds. My Labrador digs right through his current bed, so I’m planning to treat him to a hemp bed this holiday.
Something for her bathroom
With landfills overflowing and increasing in size year by year, biodegradability is an important consideration when purchasing pet products. Non-biodegradable cat litters significantly add to our landfill burden.
Innovative companies have created litters that are designed to break down safely in the environment, without leaving toxins behind. World’s Best Cat Litter is made from renewable whole kernel corn. It’s 100% biodegradable, and can be safely flushed down the toilet, even if you’re on a septic system. Unlike clay-based clumping litters, it’s safe for your cat so you’re helping her health as well as the planet’s.
Hustle up holiday food
If our animals could send letters to Santa, “good food” would probably be at the top of their wish list. Creating something delicious for your dog or cat is economical and healthy, and you can also help the earth if you use organic and/or locally sourced ingredients wherever possible. These recipes from my book Dr. Khalsa’s Natural Dog are easy to prepare and will be greatly appreciated by your furry friend.
If you’re too busy to cook for your companion during the holiday, you can buy ready-made healthy treats from an animal bakery. For example, the Dog Treatery makes all-natural dog treats you can package up as a gift for your special canine friend, or give to fellow dog lovers.
It’s been said that good health is the most important gift of all. With this in mind, a quality supplement or treat made from natural ingredients makes a great stocking stuffer for your dog or cat.
By giving your companion supplements made from natural chemical-free ingredients, you reduce the chances that he’ll get sick and require conventional medications, which can add toxic drugs to the environment when your animal excretes urine and waste. Deserving Pets and NUPRO are just two companies that offer natural high quality supplements for companion animals.
For a tasty and healthful treat, Priscilla’s Kitty Grass offers all-natural pesticide-free cat grass grown from a special blend of grains. And for something a bit different, treat your companion to some healthy Coco Therapy coconut oil or chips made from USDA certified organic coconuts.
Some of the best ways to spoil our furry companions include home cooked food, soft comfortable beds, great toys and supplements that can’t be distinguished from yummy treats. Can it get any better? Enjoy a warm and loving holiday season!