Small wins. Tiny landfill. Happy doggo.

Rethinking the way we do things has helped us reduce our landfill waste. Instead of monthly liquid flea treatments and all the plastic packaging that comes with it, we give Toki a chewable tablet that covers him for 3 months. It’s mostly packaged in cardboard with a bit of plastic. If given by the vet, it comes in a reusable zip lock bag which we can opt out of.

Small wins. Tiny landfill. Happy doggo.

An environmentalist pet owner is an oxymoron

I am a domestic animal. I sleep in a bed inside a house. I have regulated meal times. I am well trained. I get anxiety. The council knows where I live. There is a system in place if I misbehave. I suppress my instincts. My population growth is out of control. There is a system for where my poo goes. I am not to allowed pee on everything.

I think an environmentalist pet owner is an oxymoron. Domestic animals create a major environmental impact in Australia. We are aware of our dog’s carbon footprint, meat-based dietary requirements, food/medical packaging and the native fauna that he terrorises or deters. We’re equally aware of the fur therapy, companionship, sense of purpose and mental wellbeing he gives us.

Our mental health is paramount. Early on, we assessed what aspects of our lives bring us joy. We decided not to change these things when going zero waste. Our dog, Toki, is here to stay. After this, we’ll probably get another dog. Let’s not be too hard on ourselves. Let’s just improve where we can with patience, forgiveness and mindfulness.

How we apply zero waste principles to our doggo:

  • Second hand / street find bed, toys and accessories.
  • Apply local context to meat consumption ie Kangaroo in Australia (we avoid beef/pig/lamb).
  • Reuse paper bags for poo and put the whole thing in the compost (we call this our ‘yucky’ compost which is not for growing food).
  • Favour toys that are indestructible such as Kong.
  • Put fur in compost after brushing/sweeping/vacuuming.
  • Package free peanut butter in a Kong toy for chew treats. – Use dog food pellets and bananas as training treats.
  • Share leftovers when it’s nutritionally beneficial.
  • Package free vegan ‘pigs ears’ for dental treats.
  • Favour 3 month worming/flea tablets over monthly skin treatment to avoid extra packaging.
  • Use package free dog wash.
  • Respect dog rules when bushwalking. – Manage/prevent breeding.
  • Invest in health / training.
  • Monitor closely or contain to our home.

All in one liquid soap

Living zero waste is so easy now that we know what we’re doing. This is hand wash, face wash and make up remover at the bathroom sink.

The next image is dish detergent and hand wash at the kitchen sink. It’s the same Castile soap mix. It just has different purposes depending on the context. This basic mix cleans us, our stuff, our house and our dog. Glass bottles were found in the community donation bin at @ceresbrunswick. Pumps were saved from @thankyouaus dispensers at the start of our transition.

What can 1 part castile soap : 7 parts water clean?

  • Us
    • Hands
    • Face
    • Body
    • Hair
  • Our stuff
    • Dishes
    • Clothes
    • Shoes
  • Our house
    • Carpet
    • Floorboards
    • Leather
    • Surfaces
  • Our dog
    • And all the mud he walks into the house…

By popular demand: Is Dr Bronner an evil Palm Oil supporting company?

I’ve reached out to Dr. Bronner directly and was satisfied with their answer on this topic – but I haven’t researched Palm Oil in detail, so my knowledge of this topic is largely based on gut feel, tv documentaries and here-say. In the interest of diversity, I’ll be trying different brands after our giant gallon of soap is used up. I’m always keen to learn more.

Dr bronners liquid castile soap

Block soap for dog wash.

I was sceptical about shampoo bars. They didn’t appeal to me. Oh how the tables have turned! Not only am I using them for myself, but I’m now trying them on my dog!

I did a few reviews for @ethiquenz products this week. Among them was their BowWow dog shampoo bar.

Washing our smelly, muddy, double-coated doggo with bar soap was not nearly as awkward as I was anticipating. It proved to be an effective shampoo. Takes more time to get suds compared to a liquid soap but just needs a little extra water to get a lather. Doggo seemed to be fine with the new approach too. I wouldn’t say this is easier than liquid soap, but it’s really nice to have another zero waste option aside from buying liquid castile in bulk.

Vacuum waste = Excellent compost.

Having a Corgi X means that our home gets very fluffy, particularly as the weather gets warmer. Not so fun for us, but it’s amazing for our compost bin. All the waste from vacuuming is great for compost as long as it’s organic matter like dust, dirt, hair and fur.

After some short lived second-hand purchases through @gumtree, we reluctantly decided to buy a brand new @dyson vacuum cleaner. If you’re ever feeling cornered to buy brand new, it’s ok. There’s a growing number of companies that are designing products to last, and considering sustainability in their packaging design. I was confident that this would be an amazing machine, but I felt guilty before unboxing. I was impressed (and relieved) that their packaging is styrofoam free and almost plastic free. The one thing I would change is to reduce the amount of plastics in the @dyson product itself, but then I probably wouldn’t be able to afford it 🤑