There’s no denying that it’s trendy to be green. Celebrities are proudly sporting fuel-efficient hybrid SUVs. Musicians are lending their names to green clothing lines and reusable grocery bags. Green is hot and it’s here to stay.
However, just because the latest starlet pulls up in her electric car, that’s not a good enough reason for your fabulous feline to become a green copycat. Every cat lover knows that cats are temperamental when it comes to change, so here are eight good reasons to green your cat’s lifestyle.
Making the switch to organic cat food is healthier for both your cat and the planet. Organic foods are produced without the use of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, antibiotics, hormones or genetically modified organisms. Your cat will enjoy the benefits of eating natural foods without chemicals or artificial additives.
Instead of buying handfuls of cat toys made overseas, upcycle materials you already have around the home. Leftover yarn can be knitted into simple wooly squares. A toilet paper roll can be cut into a bunch of rings. A paper bag can be crunched up into a fun ball.
Use your imagination, experiment and have fun. Your cat will appreciate the new toys as well as the increased attention. You’ll also be diverting materials from the landfill and saving money by making your own toys. Just be sure that the materials you use are safe for your cat to play with, recycle the toys when they show sign of wear and always supervise your cat during playtime.
Many household cleaning products contain strong chemicals that can leave trace residues in your home if they are not thoroughly rinsed away. Given your cat’s propensity to spend large amounts of time on surfaces that you regularly clean (e.g. counters, sinks, floors), it makes sense to switch to earth-friendly household cleaners.
Do a simple web search for how to clean with vinegar and baking soda and you’ll discover that these two simple and natural ingredients can take care of the majority of your household cleaning requirements.
Shopping can be fun, but shopping for cat food and litter is usually a chore. Plan your shopping trips so that you can stock up a few months in advance.
Buy food and litter in the larger-sized containers. These usually use less packaging materials than buying the same amount in smaller containers and as an added bonus, you’ll often save money on a per volume basis.
Rather than cover your entire home with litter catching mats, cut down on tracking by switching to a pellet shaped eco-friendly cat litter. Pellet shaped litters are made from recycled paper, pine, and other fibrous-based renewable materials. The pellets tend to stick less to paws, resulting in much less litter leaving the box.
If you reduce the amount of cat litter you use by just one scoop a week, it would add up to approximately 10 lbs a year. That’s a small change with the potential to compound dramatically.
According to a 2007 survey by the American Veterinary Medical Association, over 35 million American households own at least one cat. If each household reduced their annual litter usage by just 10 lbs, approximately 175,000 tons of cat litter would be diverted from waste streams each year.
Once you experience the benefits of greening your cat, it seems selfish not to share them with your cat loving friends. Many people don’t green their cats simply because they lack information. If your friends see how easy it is for you to green your cat, your experience may inspire them to follow suit.
Plus, you’ll have another excuse to talk about your cat in public. And, since cats love being the center of attention, your kitty will enjoy being the poster kitten for your local eco-cat movement.
You no longer need to live in Berkeley, California or Portland, Oregon to find a huge selection of earth-friendly cat products. Some major brands now offer an eco-friendly line of cat food or litter. The green movement has also spawned a huge industry of smaller companies offering unique and sustainable cat products. You’ll find green products both online and at many pet stores.
About the Author: Holly Tse is a green cat expert and also the author of Make Your Own Cat Toys: Saving The Planet One Cat Toy At A Time. Her blog, Green Little Cat, shares eco-friendly tips and ideas for cats and cat lovers.