By Elizabeth Wasserman for The Dog Daily
They’ll go for a walk. They’ll go fetch. They'll go down and roll over. But how do you get your dog to go green?
Millions of people are realizing that it's better for our health to drink filtered water, recycle and stay away from chemicals and plastics. They're also starting to realize that a green lifestyle holds some of the same benefits for their dogs.
"A lot of the things you can do are not that hard, don't require a great deal of effort, and are simple steps you can take to make life more green for your dog," says Lisa Peterson, communications director with the American Kennel Club.
Toxins in the Home
Your home and yard are likely the places where you and your pet spend most of your time. But while you eat off ceramic plates and drink bottled water, Rover is eating and drinking out of plastic bowls. While you walk around in shoes and sleep in a bed, your dog is walking barefoot on the floor and rolling around on the carpet. Here's how to handle potential dangers:
Fox recommends seeking out a holistic veterinarian if you want to help your pet to "go green.” There is a searchable list on the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association Web site.
Watch out for flea and tick medicines. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is intensifying its review of these products, particularly topical products applied to the skin, after recent upturns in complaints about adverse reactions from pets. These reactions range from skin irritation to seizures, and in some rare cases, death of the pet. Fox recommends natural anti-flea and tick remedies, including:
Common household products, from rug cleaners to chew toys, can also be harmful for your dog. It's important to look for adverse reactions. "If your dog all of a sudden starts itching, scratching or biting its paws, you can play doggie detective," Peterson says. "Ask yourself, 'Did I just use a new rug cleaner or sprinkle something on the rug?’ The product itself may be safe, but individual dogs may have a reaction to it."
Elizabeth Wasserman a Washington, D.C., area-based freelancer, has been writing about pets, among other topics, for more than 15 years. Her love of dogs, in particular, was handed down through the generations from her great-grandfather, Eric Knight, who wrote the book Lassie Come Home in the 1930s.