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Lansdale, PA

Pet care in Lansdale, PA. Certified in Pet First Aid and CPR through the American Red Cross. Bonded and insured. Supporter of local pet rescue!

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Ecofriendly Little Home & Pets Blog

Eco-friendly and earth-conscious features and reviews, pet care tips, and feeding education. Gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free autoimmune diet musings.  Interested in having your product reviewed here?  Please email: ecofriendlypetreviews@gmail.com.

Filtering by Tag: Eco-Friendly

Terracycle Free Programs

Christina Ottaviano

Did you know you can print free shipping labels to send items to Terracycle that would normally be thrown in the trash?

From cigarette butts to drink pouches, toothpaste tubes and toothbrushes, even dog food bags, water filtration, Solo cups, personal care, and instrument strings…all FREE to print a label and send in for recycling.

Visit their site for a complete list: https://www.terracycle.com/en-US/brigades

We’re sending toothbrushes and toothpaste tubes.

We’re sending toothbrushes and toothpaste tubes.

https://www.woofsandwhiskerspets.com/ecofriendly-little-home-and-pets-blog/2018/10/6/terracycle-free-programs

The goal: a Life Without Plastic

Christina Ottaviano

Plastic has invaded daily living in the United States.  Used daily, items like computers, smartphones, and even parts of the cars we drive are derived from plastic components.  And those formulations come mostly from oil.  These items may seem benign, but what about the ones that make it into our bodies?  Toothbrushes, hair brushes, and cleaning supplies: the list is a never ending chaos of everyday items laden with chemicals that have been shown to cause everything from cancer to infertility.  Even more alarming is the fact that none of these products are biodegradable and they wreak havoc on the environment, leaching toxins into the land and ocean.

Numerous documentaries have cited plastic as the earth’s most evil predator, ending up in the stomachs of marine animals.  In the documentary, Plastic Paradise, film writers tell us that “every single piece of plastic that has ever been created since the 19th century is still somewhere on our planet.”  In Addicted to Plastic, the fact is that: “The development of degradable plastics is a good thing, but a lot of what we use – new trash as well as old – has penetrated some very disturbing levels of the food chain and the ecosystem, and the makes the case that all is not well in our world via a simple boat trip to the North Pacific Central Gyre, aka the Eastern Garbage patch, where air pressure and rotating water currents swirl and push all kinds of floating trash to the water’s surface.”

I keep this travel set in my purse and use it almost daily when I am walking dogs.

I keep this travel set in my purse and use it almost daily when I am walking dogs.

There are some companies devoted to making a change.  But they can’t do it without the help of consumers.  Life Without Plastic is one such business launched by activists Chantal & Jay.  With their hearts full of love after the birth of their son, and their minds disillusioned by the corporate world, they set off to make a difference in the world.  They began with non-plastic food and drink containers and expanded from there, into an ever-growing operation committed to improving the lives of earth’s inhabitants through eliminating the need for plastic products.  And they have done an amazing job. 

In their very well organized online store, consumers will find items like their Stainless Steel Lunch Box  – absolutely perfect for plastic-free traveling with packed lunches or snacks.  Both the lid and the container are made of 18-8 food grade 304 stainless steel. It can save thousands of plastic sandwich bags and wrappers from the landfills.

This stainless steel flask makes a great gift for your plastic free Valentine.

This stainless steel flask makes a great gift for your plastic free Valentine.

Almost all dust pan and brush sets sold in mass merchandisers are plastic.  What happens when it inevitably breaks, cracks or becomes warped and won’t pick up dirt anymore?  It goes in the trash and consumers purchase a new one.  That broken dust pan sits in a landfill until the end of time and adds to the mountain of garbage Americans produce on a daily basis.  Thinking of everything, the team at Life Without Plastic has provided a strong and gorgeous stainless steel alternative.  Complete with a  handle is made of sustainable, harvested German beechwood treated with protective linseed oil, this dust pan will last as a functional household item to be passed down through generations of families.  It’s heavy duty and made with care by a family in Germany committed to a better environment.  The accompanying Delta dust brush is equally charming and well made, a nod to the way things used to be made at the turn of the century.  With ethically obtained horse hair bristles, and the same beechwood handle as the dust pan, this set provides the cleaning capacity of any plastic rival with the durable longevity of stainless steel and wood.  The perfect alternatives to plastic are here and ready to show the world that it can be done! 

Another brush they sell at Life Without Plastic which features the same, sturdy handle – this time treated with beeswax is the Car Snow Removal Brush.  This generously sized brush is phenomenal for those of shorter stature, to reach all of the way across the windshield and roof of the car.  This coconut fiber bristle brush was put to the test when Philadelphia received over two feet of snow in January, 2016.  It handled the job beautifully while being very gentle on the car.  I am still using mine in 2018 and it is in perfect condition despite the multitude of nuisance storms we have had this winter.

They even sell plastic rree cloth diapers, covers and inserts!

They even sell plastic rree cloth diapers, covers and inserts!

Covering all of their bases, this company also provides a fabulous Lint Removal Brush made from beechwood and rubber which removes pet hair and lint from fabric and upholstery with lightening speed. Say goodbye to those wasteful roller sticky paper lint removers with their ugly, plastic handles and say hello to this pretty wooden handled beauty.  They have hair and toothbrushes covered as well.  The former has wooden bristles that are gentle on hair and feel good on the scalp, while the latter has pig hair bristles which have been cleaned and sanitized. My hairbrush has lasted for more than two years with very little wear and it gets a workout on my long hair. 

Made with the same beechwood and pig hair; their plastic-free cat brush.  They’ve even thought of your pets!  As with all of these products, they are completely biodegradable when no longer useful (which will be a very long time because they’re so well made!). 

Life Without Plastic has even provided natural deodorant in a glass container.  They have seriously thought of everything.  This Lavender Deodorant smells amazing with the following Ingredients: Shea butter, coconut oil, baking soda (sodium bicarbonate), castor oil, essential oils (lavender, cedarwood, bergamot, patchouli). It has no preservatives, no unnecessary additives or lab-manufactured chemicals.  And it works like a charm – a little goes a very long way to not only guard from odor but also moisturize and protect.  This small glass jar of deodorant lasted me close to a year.

Even the clothing they offer is made with soft, comfortable organic cotton and proceeds go to Plastic Pollution Coalition - a global alliance of individuals, organizations and businesses working together to stop plastic pollution and its toxic impacts on humans, animals, the ocean and the environment.  They have gone as far as to offer a wooden shoehorn, which would be a great gift for just about anyone. As a mom who uses cloth diapers, I am looking forward to trying one of their own cloth diapers and inserts: "The cloth is made from 55% hemp, which is an extremely absorbent fabric that contains natural, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial properties. Hemp does not require herbicides or pesticides to grow, meaning it is safe for your baby and for our planet!  The cloth is also made from 45% certified organic cotton that is grown and milled in the USA. This mix of materials makes for a soft and effective diaper that naturally reduces the likelihood of diaper rash. The thread is 100% unbleached organic cotton and the elastic is latex-free. Although the snaps are plastic, they are non-PVC and hypoallergenic and we are exploring ways to replace these with metal ones - as well, they are not in direct contact with baby's skin."

On the go?  How about a durable, compact stainless steel spork and organic cotton pouch?  Stop using disposable plasticware with this cute, portable set which can be washed and reused – keeping it out of the stomachs of sea animals.  I use my set almost daily while out making dog walking and pet sitting visits, along with my stainless sandwich container and my mason jar travel mug.

Things I saw while browsing that I think just about anyone could use (hint, hint...late Valentine's Day gift shoppers!): plastic free straws, stainless steel ice cube tray, safety razor, stainless ice pop maker, fountain pen and ink, and for the guy who might want to take some booze to the game, this gorgeous flask.

Love reading about Life Without Plastic?  Want to see more?  Remove plastic from all aspects of your life and learn more by reading their blog, checking out their Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube pages. 

https://www.woofsandwhiskerspets.com/ecofriendly-little-home-and-pets-blog/2018/2/12/the-goal-a-life-without-plastic

Eco-Friendly Pet Black Friday, Small Business Saturday + Cyber Monday Deals

Christina Ottaviano

Looking for deals on pet supplies to save you money this holiday season?  Look no further than my favorite companies!  I've outlined their offers here, all in one spot so it's easy to shop around from the comfort of your own home.

Eco-Bags Products, Inc. is offering 25% off your minimum order of $35 to qualify from 11/24/16-11/30/16 using code 2016ECOPET.  I love their net bags as a lightweight option to carry produce on hot summer days while visiting the farmer's market or walking dogs.  They can even be composted if the bags begin to wear out, as they are made from cotton and veggie dyes.

Our Honey dog LOVES her Vital Essentials!

Our Honey dog LOVES her Vital Essentials!

Catty Stacks is offering 30% off from 11/25/16 to 11/28/16 on their eco-friendly recycled cardboard designer cat climbers.  These fun, stackable boxes come in a variety of colors and can be built up or across for an endless playground your kitty will love.  With free shipping on purchases over $59, you can build your cat an economically priced condo this holiday season.

Thermacell rechargable foot warming insoles.

Thermacell rechargable foot warming insoles.

Esse Reusable Bags is offering a doorbuster sale starting Friday, 11/25/16 at 6AM with 60-50% off their entire site!  The company is closing out their inventory, so this will be the last chance to purchase their durable, high quality reusable bags at a fraction of the cost. Their tote bag is on my Christmas list but I am going to order one during this sale!

This teepee is a great play place + hideout.

This teepee is a great play place + hideout.

Lems Shoes is offering 30% off sitewide (excluding Correct Toes) from 11.25-11.28.  Their ultra-minimalist shoes feature wide toe boxes, mirroring the way feet are shaped.  They're super lightweight, and cute but casual.  All about form and function, the shoes are vegan-friendly as well.

Eco-Bags net bags: all natural + lightweight.

Eco-Bags net bags: all natural + lightweight.

Chewy.com is offering discounted prices on their entire Vital Essentials line of food and treats, plus free shipping on purchases of $49+.  In some cases, the discount looks to be close to half price, as their rabbit treats are marked down from $12.99 to $6.99.  If you sign up for their auto-ship program, you can save an additional 20% off.  Vital Essentials is one of our favorite brands for freeze dried treats and shelf stable freeze dried raw pet food.  Though I make our own, in an emergency it's important to have a backup plan. Their Black Friday sale goes live at midnight!

Cats love boxes and Catty Stacks are so fun!

Cats love boxes and Catty Stacks are so fun!

Walking dogs in the ice and snow during the winter in PA can be a freezing cold experience, but our friends at Thermacell have come up with a way to keep toes warm, with heat control settings through a phone app!  These rechargeable insoles give about 8.5 hours of warmth for about a 2 hour charge time.  They retail for $199.99, and there is a rebate available (contact me at ecofriendlypetreviews@gmail.com for a copy to be emailed to you).

Esse features a tote to organize your bags.

Esse features a tote to organize your bags.

P.L.A.Y. Pet Lifestyle and You is offering 40% off orders over $75 + Free Shipping over $175 from Nov. 25-28th.  Coupon code: HOWLIDAYS16 (to receive 40% off) as Free Shipping is applied automatically at checkout.  I have written about how much we love their aesthetically pleasing, very high quality and very eco-friendly pet bed in the past.

Lems are designed for superior comfort.

Lems are designed for superior comfort.

Have you heard of or seen a great deal on holistic pet products, or fun items that pet owners might love for this 2016 shopping season?  Feel free to post on Eco-Friendly Pets on Facebook, @EcoPetReviews on Twitter, or tag me on Instagram @ecofriendlypetproductreviews so I can share!

https://www.woofsandwhiskerspets.com/ecofriendly-little-home-and-pets-blog/2016/11/24/eco-friendly-pet-black-friday-small-business-saturday-cyber-monday-deals

Homemade pet safe cleaners + my favorite essential oil supplier

Christina Ottaviano

One day a short time ago, an article was posted to NPR’s Facebook page with a caption that stated: “More than 1,000 sick and dying sea lion pups have been found stranded since the beginning of the year, from Santa Barbara to San Diego. As scientists try to figure out why, one animal rescue worker says that in nearly three decades on the job, he's never seen anything like it.”  The question central to the investigation asks why these adorable little sea mammals are seemingly starving.  The answer seems to be that there are not enough fish for them to eat.  But why is the fish population decreasing so alarmingly?

There isn’t just one answer, but a complex web of cause and effect that has rendered our oceans incapable of sustaining life to its fullest capability.  In previous articles, there has been discussion about plastic bags, chemicals in household cleaners (and alternative products to use instead), and recycling of plastics into new items such as colanders, park benches and dog beds.  None of these things will happen though, if the plastics don’t get to the proper venue for recycling or consumers do not use environmentally friendly cleaning products.  All of this leaches back into the water supply and eventually, the ocean.  If everyone does their part by making the effort to be sure the plastic gets to its proper destination for recycling, or uses plastic alternatives, the oceans may suffer less. In the meantime, I am very careful about what cleaning products I use, especially on the floors where my animals lay and walk, and then clean themselves.  Homemade is the best because I get to customize it.

These recipes are borrowed from Mountain Rose Herbs (and you can purchase all of the ingredients needed on their website):

Super Surface Spray

• 16 oz. spray bottle

• 14 oz. – 1:1 solution of distilled white vinegar and water

• 7 drops of tea tree essential oil

• 7 drops of lavender essential oil

• 7 drops of lemon essential oil

Use this aromatic and disinfecting solution for cleaning kitchen counters, cabinets, refrigerator shelves, blinds, painted wood surfaces, painted walls, molding, fan blades, and more.

Herby Soft Scrub

• 12 oz glass jar with lid

• 1/2 cup baking soda

• 1/2 cup castille soap

• 15 drops of antimicrobial essential oils like rosemary and sage

Mix well until you have a nice consistency like cake frosting. If you have leftovers, add 1 tsp vegetable glycerin to keep the blend nice and moist.

Antibacterial Soap Spray

• 16 oz spray bottle

• 14 oz. water or rosemary hydrosol

• 3 tbsp castille soap

• 15 drops of tea tree essential oil

• 15 drops of oregano essential oil

Use this cleaning spray to disinfect your bathroom surfaces. You can use the Super Surface Spray to rinse away any residue left behind by the castille soap.

Refreshing Linen Spray

• 16 oz. spray bottle

• 3 oz. unflavored vodka

• 12 drops lavender, ylang ylang, peppermint, orange or your favorite smelling essential oil

• 12 oz. organic hydrosol of your choice

Spray to refresh your mattress, pillows, bed linens, couches, and fabric covered chairs, or spritz clean winter blankets before storing for the year. Also makes a wonderful ironing spray.  I've also ordered this set from Amazon.com: Calily Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils Kit, and have been extremely happy with the quality of the oils.

I highly recommend reading their blog and signing up for their newsletter; it is packed with recipes, tips and tricks as well as sustainable and green news.  They’re also on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google +.

https://www.woofsandwhiskerspets.com/ecofriendly-little-home-and-pets-blog/2016/8/23/homemade-pet-safe-cleaners-my-favorite-essential-oil-supplier

P.L.A.Y. has an eye for beautifully crafted, earth-friendly pet products

Christina Ottaviano

If you’re an avid green “lifestyler”, you likely pay close attention to the products you use and how they affect the environment, and the food you eat and the way it impacts your health.  You probably consciously reduce, reuse and recycle whenever possible.  And, if you have pets, you also have the same focus for them.  There is a wonderful selection of pet products on the market for those with a greener conscience.

Pet Lifestyle and You (P.L.A.Y.) started with an adorable pug named Momo and a commitment for a very high quality, safe product.  P.L.A.Y. partnered with a manufacturer that has been making products for infant children for over two decades.  Because the company is committed to preservation of the environment, Planet Fill™ polyfiber, made from recycled plastic bottles for P.L.A.Y. beds is used to fill their comfy beds.  They’ve minimized packaging, and what packaging they do use is certified safe by the Forest Stewardship Council.

My dachshunds, Molly, Honey, Ricky and Lucy tried out the Dog on a Wire pet bed, which P.L.A.Y. sent me to review.  This bed is the perfect combination of artistic design and realistic functionality.  The density of the stuffing is soft, cozy and comfortable.  It’s well constructed, and the fabric is strong, easy to clean and durable.  They absolutely loved it, snoozing peacefully and comfortably for hours!  And I was thrilled that they were happy on a bed that was manufactured with their health and well being in mind.

The 100% cotton cover is removable for easy washing.  The duvet covers are sold separately, allowing savvy owners to switch out covers seasonally, or when washing so that the bed is always available for use.  They also recommend owners who purchase the duvet covers can fill them with their own, old clothes.  How’s that for re-purposing?  It doesn’t get much greener than that. 

A full selection of P.L.A.Y. products, with photos and reviews is available on Amazon.com as well.

P.L.A.Y.  is on Facebook, and you can like them here to keep up with news and special offers.  Follow them on Twitter, too.  They also have a newsletter signup available here.

https://www.woofsandwhiskerspets.com/ecofriendly-little-home-and-pets-blog/2016/8/14/play-has-an-eye-for-beautifully-crafted-earth-friendly-pet-products