From greening my household cleaning supplies to choosing organic food to being mindful of ingredients in body care products, I try to shop thoughtfully and make the best purchasing decisions for my family and the planet’s health. That said, I recently discovered there’s one area I’ve erroneously overlooked – our dog.
Our big loveable Labrador Brophy is as loyal as he is energetic. He has always been the protective guard dog we needed and the cuddly playful pet we wanted. From morning through night, he has one eye on the whole family (and the other on his food bowl).
Recently though I have been wondering if I could have been paying better attention to him. Is it possible to green pet care? Are there less toxic (and perhaps less expensive) alternatives to conventional options for common problems like fleas, pet stains and seasonal allergies?
In hopes of learning a few homemade remedies for everyday pet problems, I asked around and learned a few tips and tricks from other pet owners. Here are a few everyday products that pull double duty around the house and your pet.
Note, always check with your pet’s veterinarian before treating your pet.
Baking soda: This all-purpose household item solves numerous pet problems. If you’re already using baking soda to freshen your fridge, carpet or trash cans, try a thin layer on the bottom of bird, rabbit and hamster cages too. Is your pet accident-prone? After an accident on a rug or carpet, scrub the area with club soda, and let dry. Then sprinkle the area with baking soda, and let it stand before vacuuming.
Nutritional yeast: Fans of nutritional yeast sprinkle it on their popcorn and stir it into their mashed potatoes, but it is also used to help keep pets’ coats healthy and makes them less tasty to fleas. The correct amount of yeast depends on the size of the dog, so seek guidance from your pet’s vet.
Essential oils: I heard from a few dog owners who swear by essential oils as nerve-calming remedies and anti-itch solutions. Like nutritional yeast, fleas don’t like the taste of some essential oils either.
But be careful, because some essential oils have been reported to be toxic to cats and dogs, so be sure to talk to your pet’s vet first to see which oils are best for your pet. Always remember that when essential oils are used, they must first be diluted into a carrier oil. I’m sure many savvy shoppers have other homemade remedies for pet care that helps them keep a leash on the cost of pet-care products.
What are your tips? I’d love to hear them.