Despite what Kermit the Frog said, it’s actually easy being green–here are 10 things you can do to make the world a better place for animals (and people too!):
1. Adopt from a shelter
Adopting an animal from a shelter is one of the best ways to make sure you are reusing a valuable resource, according to Sarah Belgard from Recycled Pets Rescue in Encino, California. “Our society is one that seems to believe that everything is disposable,” she says. “With pets, sadly, this is due mostly to a lack of long-term commitment.” When you adopt a pet from a shelter instead of a breeder, you minimize pet reproduction, ensuring fewer animals enter shelters and risk euthanasia in the future.
2. Spay or neuter your pet
Once you adopt a pet, it is important to spay or neuter him to reduce the chance of his offspring ending up on the streets or back at the shelter. According to the Humane Society of the United States, spaying and neutering help communities by reducing the amount of money spent on controlling unwanted animals in addition to lowering the risk of dog bites and attacks from stray animals. It also helps dogs, cats, and rabbits live longer, healthier lives by reducing the risk for ovarian cancer, testicular cancer, and prostate disease.
3. Make better food choices
Organic is the word du jour and it applies to our pet food as well. Seeking out organic food is not only a healthy option for our furry friends, it’s also good for our environment. According to the USDA, organic farming emphasizes the use of renewable resources and the conservation of soil and water to enhance environmental quality for future generations. That means no pesticides, no fertilizers made with synthetic ingredients, no bioengineering, no antibiotics, and no growth hormones.
4. Use eco-friendly cleaning products
It doesn’t take a trip to the grocery store to know that there is a glut of cleaning products on the market. While all brands like to brag with catchphrases like, “Kills 99 percent of the bacteria,” and “Cuts the grease,” etc, it’s important to know that products can be effective but also harmful to people, pets, and the environment. To turn your utility closet into a friend of the environment, seek out eco-friendly alternatives to disinfectants and chlorine bleach products, and use household products such as baking soda, vinegar, lemon juice, and natural essential oils. These products are eco-friendly and they won’t harm humans or pets.