Woman holding her dog

Ways to Reduce your Pet's Carbon Paw Print

Unless you live in the woods it’s almost impossible for your dog to do what comes naturally without creating plastic waste. But here are some ways you can reduce it. We’ll be adding some recommendations for cats soon.

GreenPolly dog poop bags are made of 80-90% post-consumer recycled plastic and 10-20% plastic made from sugarcane. If your dog’s poo is headed for landfill this is a good bag to use. Compostable bags sound green, but pet waste cannot be added to compost. The bag and the waste will decompose in landfill and emit methane which is a potent greenhouse gas.

Using recycled plastic contributes to a recycle economy and has a much smaller carbon footprint than virgin plastic. The bags won’t decompose in landfill and emit methane. That being said, they pose all the environmental hazards of any plastic bag and should be disposed of responsibly so they don’t end up littering landscapes and waterways.

Paw Inspired pee pads are the greenest, by far. They are machine washable and can be used over and over again. Instead of buying disposable pads – save money and reduce your pup’s carbon footprint at the same time. 

The top layer quickly and fully absorbs whatever your pet leaves behind, and the under layer is leakproof to protect your flooring or crate. These hold up well and can be washed hundreds of times. I’ve used the same pads for over two years and they show no sign of wear. After machine washing I hang them to dry.

I also use them in my dog’s car carrier and under her bowls. They come in gray and beige, in a range of sizes. The extra large sizes can be used to protect your car seat or couch.

Reduce your pet’s carbon footprint with Pogi’s disposable pee pads which are more eco-friendly than most. They come in three sizes: medium, large, and extra large.

The top layer is made from bamboo with an ultra-absorbent layer under it, made from certified sustainable pine. According to Pogi’s, the leak-proof protective under layer is a “bio-hybrid” combination of plastic and organic material. They don’t disclose what’s in this “bio-hybrid” layer, but state that it is not compostable or biodegradable. This is a plus since soiled pads cannot be added to compost due to the toxicity of the waste. They are most likely tossed into garbage that ends up in landfill. Compostable or biodegradable plastics decompose slowly in landfills and emit methane which is a potent greenhouse gas. So this “bio-hybrid” plastic is an acceptable solution.

Pogi’s have a slight honey scent that’s appealing to dogs. So these work well in crates, too. 

If you’re looking for the most planet-friendly solution consider washable pee pads. I use those at home and Pogi’s when I travel with my pup.