Mother Jones recently reported on the book Time to Eat the Dog? The Real Guide to Sustainable Living, explores what sustainability really means across all of our lifestyle decisions… including our pets.
So what harm are Mr. Whisker Mittens and Fluffy McKissyNose doing? The book’s authors found that:
- Dogs are the biggest offenders—a medium-sized pup is worse for the planet than a gas-guzzling car, with twice the impact of driving a luxury SUV 10,000 miles.
- While unscooped poop contaminates waterways, those of us who do scoop usually use bags that aren’t biodegradable.
- Cats aren’t off the hook either—two million tons of cat litter gets sent to landfill each year, and most of it isn’t biodegradable.
- Outdoor cat? It can have an impact on the local wildlife, as anyone who’s received a mouse “gift” from their well-meaning friend knows.
- Nosh time is rough, too. Pet food has an environmental cost when it comes to packaging, shipping, and distribution.
- Sick pet? Medications and flea and tick treatments add toxic chemicals to the environment.