Part 1. Diet
Pets have a huge impact on our planet, from the toys they play with to the food they eat.
In a recent study by Dr Pim Martens, dogs have been shown to contribute 10.7 million tons of greenhouse gases a year through their diet alone. That is equivalent to 1.2 million homes’ energy use for one year!
Overconsumption is partly to blame. By overconsumption, we mean eating more than necessary to sustain yourself. In other words, your pet has put on a few extra pounds than it needs. Not only is obesity harmful to the environment but it is also harmful to your pets' long-term health and wellbeing. However, the great thing about obesity is that with the right help it is something that is easily fixed!
Just as with us pet parents, the food that we consume has an impact on the environment. We have all heard that cows produce a lot of methane (a greenhouse gas) but that is only the tip of the iceberg! The environmental impact of our food comes from the whole life cycle of an animal, that means the impact of the food the animal eats (pesticides used, how its harvested, where is it sourced from) combined with the impact of the animal's life (antibiotic usage, animal waste, the environment that it lives in, how the meat is caught and processed).
Fish have the lowest impact on the environment, partly due to the aquatic environment that they live in, but this environment is under threat. Overfishing has caused a reduction of the fish in our sea, pollution of our oceans and has damaged the environments that they need to survive. George Bramble, founder of Beco quotes in our interview with him, that ‘one salmon farm in Scotland creates more sewage than a town the size of Oban’!
Why should your pet care? As an owner of a cat that dreams about fish, it means that one day he will not be able to have the fishy treats he craves as stocks will be extensively depleted and affected by disease. As an owner of a dog who loves to swim, it means not being able to jump in the sea, because it will be polluted and dirty. A very sad picture indeed.
Enter Beco. Beco has been the guiding star when it comes to all things eco-pet and they have not let us down with this one. In our new podcast, we discuss their new Marine Stewardship Council-certified haddock dog food made from sustainably caught fish, the first in the UK! Which is among a range of other sustainable dog food options Beco provides. George shares with us why it is so positive for the future of our oceans and our pet's health and boy are our pets happy about that!
In this enlightening interview, we hear why he decided 12 years ago to set up his efforts to protect the planet, with a little extra help from our furry friends, and shares some top tips on how to reduce your pets carbon pawprint©. A must-listen for any dedicated pet parent!
Choosing the right diet for your pet can be very challenging but it just shows that knowing where the ingredients come from is just as important for your pet as the ingredients in them.
For one animal alone 13 million acres of forest is required to sequester the greenhouse gases produced by a pet in one year. That is an unimaginable number of trees, but do not fear! We have partnered with SeaTrees, to enable pet parents across the world to reduce their pets carbon paw print and the best part about it, you can do it for free! There is a catch though... To be able to plant a tree you have to be proactive in looking after your pet’s health and that means regular exercise (the less driving the better!), maintaining your pet’s healthy weight, and staying up to date with preventative health care.
Find out more about the top UK Eco pet brand, Beco, in our Petcast, available on Spotify.
If you are concerned about your pet's weight please feel free to speak to one of our friendly veterinarians, for a bespoke weight loss programme, on the FREE PetPanion app!
PetPanion, helping you and your pet save the planet one paw at a time.