Your pet wants you to read our newsletter. (Then give them a treat.)
Caring for our pets means caring for the planet, right? To ensure a future where our animals can continue to run, forage, and sniff out in nature, we should all be taking steps toward sustainability. Sure, resource conservation, wildlife protection, and other pillars of environmentalism call for a global commitment beyond what we can do as individual pet parents — but our habit shifts do add up when we work together!
That’s why we’re excited to see more of the pet care industry creating sustainability initiatives. A number of pet brands have recently joined 1% for the Planet — an organization that connects businesses and individuals with values-aligned nonprofit partners. How does it work? Each member commits to donating one percent of their revenues to chosen environmental nonprofits, and 1% for the Planet certifies all member donations, ensuring that support goes directly into eco-action. While that may not sound like a lot, that small number can make a huge difference — members have invested a total of over $350 million in environmental solutions through their network to date.
“This is not philanthropy — this should be a cost of doing business,” said Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia and 1% for the Planet. “It’s paying rent for our use of the planet.” To wrap up Earth Month, we rounded up 11 pet businesses participating in the 1% for the Planet pledge, who make everything from kibble to carriers to catnip.
Roverlund makes durable, design-forward pet gear and accessories. Their totes, leashes, beds, and more are suitable for urban and outdoorsy pet parents alike. Got travel plans with your pooch? The stylish Out-of-Office Pet Carrier is made with the toughest marine and mountaineering grade materials and is sized to comply with most airline requirements.
When you shop from pup essentials brand Wanderuff, you can know you helped keep single-use plastic out of landfills. Each collar, leash, and harness is made with recycled plastic webbing and shipped in eco-friendly packaging. This year, Wanderruff’s nonprofit partner is the Pacific Parklands Foundation, an organization that protects, supports, and preserves natural spaces in Vancouver where the company is based.
The most fun purchase you can make for your cat might also be the most sustainable. Catbuzz from Pettobox is a hand-harvested, locally sourced, pesticide-free catnip blend wrapped in a reusable cotton pouch, and concocted for optimum cat enjoyment. Their catnip plants are grown in Rainier, WA, where farmers practice a sustainable intensification model to cultivate high-quality plants with minimal environmental impact. Did you know response to catnip is hereditary? About 70 to 80 percent of cats exhibit heightened excitement for 10 minutes or so after being exposed to catnip. If your kitty is one of them, you might want to try this out.
Project Blu is a UK brand on a mission to revolutionize the pet accessories market. Made with materials like ocean-bound plastic, recycled textiles, and discarded fishing nets, their products turn trash into treasure. Since the brand was founded as an antidote to “throwaway culture,” each collar, toy, and dog bed is handmade to last. Check out the ELeather collection, which includes stylish leashes and collars upcycled from leather that would otherwise have ended up in a landfill.
Here at The Wildest, we love all creatures, great and small — including bees! That’s why we’re fans of Project Hive, a pet company that’s working to restore bee habitats and protect these vital pollinators. Project Hive makes toys from eco-friendly materials and vegetarian treats with a drop of organic honey. One percent of revenue goes to The Bee and Butterfly Habitat Fund, a nonprofit dedicated to building and restoring pollinator habitats.
Petaluma makes sustainable dog food entirely from plants. Their oven-baked food and dehydrated chews contain ingredients like roasted peanut butter, sweet potato, and chickpeas to offer a full spectrum of vital nutrients for your pup. No stinky meat products, just full and happy pets. They will even send you a free sample if you want to try before you buy.
It might not be the most glamorous part of pet ownership, but caring for a dog means you’ve got to scoop their poop. Keep your walks eco-friendly with GreenLine Pet Supply poop bags, which (unlike others on the market) are genuinely biodegradable. The average dog owner throws away over 1,000 bags per year, so using bags that will break down readily in a landfill is an important part of being a sustainable pet parent. Bags are shipped in minimal packaging with bulk options available.
Laguna Beach-based cat care company Less Litter is the world’s only producer of litter boxes made entirely from medical-grade stainless steel — the same material used for making things like boat parts and medical instruments. While plastic litter boxes have a limited lifetime in your home, they persist indefinitely in landfills and cannot be recycled. A steel box from Less Litter, on the other hand, provides a clean and safe environment for your cat, and can be melted down into something useful once it needs to be replaced.
With every passing year, the need to reduce global meat consumption becomes more and more urgent. And with pets’ diets accounting for about 30 percent of the environmental impacts of meat production in the U.S., we need some greener alternatives. Wilder Harrier aims to create ultra nutritious, whole-food products for your dog from alternative proteins including crickets, fish, and seaweed, all of which have an ecological footprint a fraction of the size of chicken and beef.
Doggy Do Good is a family-owned pet shop known for their certified home compostable pet waste bags. Every purchase from Doggy Do Good gives back to animal rescues and sanctuaries. Their mission is to support all animals, not just furry family members, so at least 10 percent of profits are donated quarterly to animal welfare organizations including The Humane Society, Gentle Barn, and Friends of Animals.
Ever treated your pet to a gourmet doggie dessert? Chews Happiness creates handcrafted dog treats with the highest standards of ethical and sustainable business. The brand’s signature “Bakaron” are inspired by French macaron and made with organic, sustainably sourced, and fair trade ingredients. One percent of Chews Happiness proceeds go to the Maya Foundation, a nonprofit providing care and shelter for hundreds of rescue animals in Bhutan.
Maia is a freelance writer focused on using storytelling to help people treat our planet with more compassion. She lives in Chicago with her perfect pets, Maxx the dog and Rubie the cat. Find her on maiawelbel.com and @mwelbel.