I just got a puppy. His name is Dr. Mordechai Appelbaum. Yes, that’s right. He is a doctor and currently on sabbatical to follow his true passion – pooping on my new rug.
Anybody who’s gotten a new pet knows that the first year of training is rough stuff. There are potty accidents on the regular, your house always smells like a mix of urine and toxic odor sprays, and – if you live in an apartment – you can say goodbye to your budget because you’ll be too busy investing in bags and bags of puppy pads.
Well, after about a month of odor spray bottles, puppy pads, and carpet cleaners, I suddenly realized that training this dog was not only rough on my budget and social life – it was also rough on the environment.
There’s not a lot of research on the subject – but chew on this for a minute. According to the Clean Air Council, Americans throw away 49 million baby diapers a day, which accounts for 2 percent of the garbage generated in the U.S.
And if we know that parents are throwing away 20 diapers a day (I know – crazy, right?), how much are our puppies wasting by comparison? Mordy pees every two hours, so that means I have to change his pad a minimum of six times a day (if I let him use one twice).
So I’m essentially producing the waste of roughly 1/3 a newborn baby – and all this for a dog? Imagine if I had two dogs? Or three?
Luckily, I did a little research, and found out there are eco-friendly alternatives:
Biodegradable puppy pads! A few options to get you started:
The puppy pads are made from naturally renewable resources, and are completely compostable and 100% eco-friendly.
Important Note: Just remember that whether you use biodegradable puppy pads or not will make no difference if they’re not disposed of in either your sewage system or through your local commercial composting site that accepts this type of waste. Switching to these pads is a serious commitment to your eco-friendly lifestyle.
ALSO! Another option I discovered during a very riveting puppy training class is to avoid puppy pads altogether! Just don’t use them! I know that sounds impossible, but it turns out that using puppy pads can actually stunt your dog’s ability to learn how to hold his bladder.
If you skip the pads altogether instead, you’ll likely endure a few more pet stains, but one good clean of your carpet post-training pales in comparison to the 1,080+ puppy pads you’ll go through (6 months of training X 30 days per month X 6 pads per day).
And if your little one does have an accident or two all over your brand new chevron Crate and Barrel rug (not that that happened to me or anything), then make sure you’re being eco-conscious about your carpet cleaning.
You can make your own carpet cleaning products. Simply mix equal parts water and white vinegar into a spray bottle. Add 2-4 spoonfuls of baking soda and voila! Puppy carpet cleaner.