How to be a sustainable dog owner

How to be a sustainable dog owner

Sustainability is always on WAG’s collective minds, inspiring and informing how we source, sell and package our treats. It’s a united responsibility to maintain and protect our planet and natural resources, which means everybody must do their part to keep our ecosystem flourishing. 

While there’s no single way to define sustainability, the core concept is simple: adopting balanced procedures and processes that safeguard our environment and to preserve our world for future generations to enjoy.

It means being conscious of your environmental impact, your carbon footprint, and understanding how your individual actions can impact the Earth.

Why should sustainability be important to you?

Unsustainable practices can range from overproduction and overhunting to mass destruction of rainforests and wildlife habitats. Concern has grown in recent years that our current model of resource use and consumption will result in the eventual destruction of our planet.

There are overwhelming consequences to unsustainable practices. With our current global use of resources, fossil fuels, and environmentally impactful processes, the future looks very bleak.

Not only do we want to enjoy the spectacular ecosphere we’ve been given, we want our children and grandchildren (and doggos and dog-grand-children) to enjoy it too. We need to commit to change.

The environmental impact of dog food

So, exactly how impactful is pet food on the environment? 

Today, the Australian pet food industry is estimated to be a whopping $94 billion-dollar trade. According to the RSPCA, there are an estimated 24 million pets in Australia alone, and experts agree that the pet population is only going to keep growing.

To speak plainly, it’s estimated that the carbon footprint of one medium-sized dog is equivalent to a large SUV. Animals are some of the most significant consumers of meat, which puts a huge strain on the demand for animal production and processing.

So, our best friend has the same carbon paw-print of a sports car. What next? 

How to be a sustainable pet owner

It's not simple, but it's a start:

  1. Check the ingredients
  2. Don’t overfeed
  3. Support companies that support sustainable efforts

Check the ingredients

If feeding high-quality pet food is important to you, you’ve probably heard the word ‘by-product’. By-products are the leftovers of agriculture that would be otherwise wasted, such as offal, organs, and other bits humans don’t eat but your doggo loves.

Not only are by-products healthy, they’re a sustainable way to fulfil your dog’s need to eat meat without contributing to over-production and excessive slaughter. Waste not, want not.

Feed your dog less

It’s simple: eating less food equals less environmental impact.

41% of dogs in Australia are classified as overweight or obese. Overfeeding is an enormous contributor to this gloomy statistic, and improving your dog’s weight could benefit not only their health but the environment too. 

If you can’t figure out exactly what your doggo’s waistline should look like, check out this handy guide. If in doubt, visit your veterinarian and ask for their advice on how to get that dog-bod slimmed down.

Support companies dedicated to sustainability

The choices we make and the companies we choose to fund with our hard-earned cash can make a huge impact in the fight for sustainability. Businesses are all about supply and demand – if more consumers demand eco-friendly and sustainable practices, more businesses will supply it.

Ensure that your fave pet food company is dedicated to reducing waste, reusing resources and recycling as much as possible. Even WAG.

Some meat sources are significantly more sustainable than others, so choose your flavour wisely. Kangaroo meat is considered the most humane and sustainable way of producing red meat, emitting less greenhouse gasses than sheep and cattle and ultimately putting less strain on the atmosphere. 

Modern pet owners have a lot of love for their dogs and they want to know that they’re making well-informed decisions about their pet’s health. WAG is here to give them the very best, pure and simple, without compromising the environment.

 

Dogs and the outdoors go hand in hand–there’s no way we can have one without the other. There’s no better time than now to commit to being sustainable.

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