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    Everything You Need to Know About Eco-Friendly Dog Toys

    • 7 min read

    At Chopper and Otis, we have one goal: to provide eco-friendly, non-toxic and safe dog toys for your dogs. Sustainability and green initiatives are very important to us, because a healthy planet equals happy puppies and dog parents! But what exactly are eco-friendly dog toys and how do they help both our furry friends and the environment? 

    What are Eco-Friendly Dog Toys?

    Eco-friendly dog toys use only environmentally friendly materials in their construction. Unlike the materials that traditional dog toys are made of, these materials are renewed, recycled, or upcycled.

    Why Buy Eco-Friendly Dog Toys?

    Many are converting to an eco-friendly lifestyle by incorporating everything from small habits and routines into their daily lives, to using eco-friendly products that aren’t harmful to the environment. Moving towards being eco-friendly isn’t new; the trend has been around for years. It won’t stop anytime soon! 

    More people are joining the green movement as researchers continuously identify products we use in our everyday lives that are harming our planet. By ending the use of these harmful products, or switching to a friendlier alternative, we’re able to help save Earth one action at a time.

    The more damage that occurs to the environment, the less likely that damage can be reversed. Since we all share the same planet (including our pets), the contributions people make ultimately benefits everyone.

    As a dog owner, you and your furry friend can exercise eco-friendly and sustainable practices together by switching to eco-friendly dog toys! Not only do eco-friendly toys protect your dog from harmful toxins and chemicals, but you can rest easy knowing your furry friend is safeandentertained!

    At Chopper & Otis,all our dog toys are free from BPA, PVC, phthalates, vinyl, and hard plastics, and contain no harmful dyes or dangerous chemicals. They’re FDA compliant and safe. 

    What are Eco-Friendly Dog Toys Made Of?

    Hemp

    Hemp is one of many environmentally friendly materials used in pooch toys, and it can be recycled or reused. What’s more, hemp is 100% biodegradable! It’s claimed that hemp can reduce the effect of global warming, since it removes more carbon dioxide per acre than most plants. Less carbon dioxide means fresher air for you and Fido! 

    Hemp is a plant that is weed resistant. This means that herbicides don’t need to be used in most production processes of growing hemp. The end result is clean air and reduced pesticides in the environment!

    The bio-products that are made of hemp can create products that are friendly to the environment, as these products can be recycled. Plus, many products made of hemp are non-toxic (a win for your dog), renewable, and biodegradable!

    Our Beco Dual Fernando The Flamingo toy is made from recycled plastic bottles, hemp and cotton! 

     

     

    Bamboo

    A renewable resource, bamboo is the most sustainable plant in the world. Forestry is not required when using bamboo as a raw material, making it easy to manage and maintain. As one of the fastest growing plants on earth, there’s also an abundance of bamboo available. It only takes two to three years for bamboo to reach its maturity, whereas it takes a tree 30 years to grow!

    To produce bamboo fibres, only 15% of the total energy required to produce traditional fibers is needed - saving 85% of energy. Compared to the production process of most other natural fibers, bamboo has the lowest energy requirement.

    Growing bamboo is also great for the environment, as it is a carbon dioxide absorber and releases more oxygen into the air, in comparison with an equivalent mass of trees. Thus, bamboo is excellent for taking in greenhouse gases and supplying us with oxygen.

    Rice Husk

    For those who aren’t familiar with rice husk (or rice hulls), rice husk is the hard coating on seeds or grains of rice. Rice husk is formed from hard materials including lignin and silica, which act to protect the seed during the growing season.

    Not only does rice husk have fantastic stable and consistent properties like bamboo fibers, but it’s a sustainable filler that keeps costs low. It’s a win-win!

    Due to rice husk’s makeup, it has strong properties. The high lignin content in these husks slows down the degradation of fast degrading materials. Ultimately, rice husk breaks down into a fertilizing material, which is good for the environment!

    Our Beco Hoop On a Rope is made from all natural rubber and rice husk fibers.

    Recycled Material or Plastic

    It’s widely known that plastic lives on earth for a very long time. Plastic bottles can take 450 years or more to decompose, but other plastic items take much longer - up to 1,000 years! That’s why it’s important for us to recycle plastic when we can to protect the environment.

    By choosing to recycle plastic bottles, the extra space in landfills can be used for other waste. Furthermore, recycling provides a more clean environment for sea animals by eliminating bottles in the ocean. Air pollution is reduced as well, since many landfill facilities incinerate bottles and produce irritants or pollutants into the air from this process.

    Recycling plastic water bottles also helps to conserve natural resources such as oil. That’s not all, but energy is conserved as well! This is because the creation of new materials from existing materials uses much less energy compared to using raw materials. Recycling plastic is one of the easiest steps we can take to live a more sustainable life that benefits everyone - animals included!

    Cycle Dog’s Retread Turtle is made from ecolast post-consumer material, recycled bicycle tubes. Is this not the cutest eco-friendly dog toy you’ve ever seen? 

    Natural Rubber

    Natural rubber is classified as a polymer, which is a large molecule that consists of smaller, repeated molecules. Not only is it elastic and moldable, it’s also much stronger than artificial rubber. The extract of natural rubber is harvested from a specific tree, and thus, has no artificial chemicals or man made toxins in it. Moreover, natural rubber harvesting doesn’t require trees to be cut down, allowing more air to be filtered!

    This natural material is made from latex (a milky sap) that’s harvested from the Brazilian rubber tree. It takes approximately seven years for a rubber tree to produce rubber that’s ready to be tapped. In addition, the way the crop is planted, harvested, and cleared influences the sustainability of the plantation.

    Since irresponsible farming methods in the artificial rubber industry have resulted in deforestation, natural rubber farming is a solution to minimize harm to planet Earth.

    The Soda Pup Ultra-Durable Chew Ball is not only tons of fun for your pup, but it’s made from FDA compliant, non-toxic, natural rubber compound. Plus, it’s biodegradable! 

    Recycled/Upcycled Materials

    You may be wondering what the difference between “recycled” and “upcycled” is. A recycled material is one that has become reusable after it has been converted from waste into a new material. When a material is recycled, it goes back into production and comes out as a different material. On the other hand, an upcycled material is one that has become a higher quality or higher value material from reusing it for a different purpose. Upcycling is a form of recycling, but materials don’t need to be sent to a recycling center to be broken down.

    Many of Chopper & Otis’ brands work the recycling process into their toy making and put great effort into reducing landfill mass. For instance, WestPaw and Planet Dog both recycle their dog toys and turn them into new toys. As for upcycled products, Cycle Dogs takes used bike tubes and upcycles them into dog toys!

    Our Boz Dog Ball is made for tough chewers, and to last! The best part about this eco-friendly dog toy? When the toy is worn out, you can send it back West Paw where they will recycle the materials into a brand new toy. West Paw keeps waste out of landfills, chemicals out of soil and water, and they are made in Montana, USA.

    Both recycling and upcycling helps to create less waste and minimizes the impact on the environment. If none of the above materials are to be found in the product information section of your dog’s toy, make sure the toy is recyclable and non-toxic to ensure it’s eco-friendly. For example, our Wobble Ball is made with ABS thermoplastic and is 100% recyclable!

    Supply and Processing Chain

    At Chopper and Otis, our goal is to make the world a better place while providing eco-friendly fun for our furry friends. Every brand we carry is thoroughly examined to ensure they align with our values. We bark about each one because they meet our criteria.

    Traditional supply and processing chains contribute largely to the growing environmental issues our world faces. To address these issues, green supply chains have emerged. These supply chains mitigate environmental degradations and control water, waste, and air pollution by exercising sustainable practices into the traditional supply chain. The green processes involved in these supply chains include everything from supplier selection to product distribution.

    With sustainable practices being applied to green supply chains, the process of making products like eco-friendly dog toys in these chains use less water and have a reduced carbon footprint. More and more consumers are now supporting green supply chains as they aim to purchase eco-friendly products, including dog toys!

    Eco-Friendly and Sustainable Dog Products

    At Chopper & Otis, you can count on our brands to provide you with eco-friendly and sustainable dog products. We follow Green America’s Guideline strictly to verify whether the brands we offer are sustainable, so you know you’re supporting eco-friendly brands!

    Green America is a nonprofit organization in the United States that promotes environmentally aware, ethical consumerism. They were founded in 1982 and went by the name of “Co-op America” until January 2009. Their mission is to harness economic power—the strength of consumers, investors, businesses, and the marketplace—to create a socially just and environmentally sustainable society. Green America’s vision is working for a world where all people have enough, all communities are healthy and safe, and the bounty of Earth is preserved for all generations to come. They have four focus areas: climate and clean energy, sustainable food and agriculture, responsible investing, and fair labour. As they’re known for supporting environmentally sustainable practices, it only makes sense to follow their guidelines when verifying our brands.

    Benefits for the Environment And For Pups

    Switching to eco-friendly dog products from a company that applies a green concept in their supply chain benefits the environment, and your pup! Low impact processing and dying has a significantly better effect on the environment than traditional processes do, and zero to minimal harmful chemicals are used in these items unlike in some traditional toys.

    Take, for example, Le Sharma. Le Sharma uses 100% vegetable dyes that are all natural, so pet parents don’t have to worry about these products harming their pet. Another noteworthy brand is Cycle Dog. Their duraplush toys are 100% handmade, which reduces the use of machines greatly. They also ensure no chemicals are used, so toxicity isn’t something to be concerned about for your best fur buds! 

    Chopper & Otis provides eco-friendly and non-toxic toys for dogs that are safe and fun! Our products include interactive treat finders, which are mentally stimulating interactive treat dispenser toys, toys with sound features, and more! To wash dog toys, pop them in the washing machine with the option of using a mild detergent or none at all. Or, hand wash them with gentle soap and water. 

    Find our comprehensive list of the best eco-friendly dog toys here!

    Until next time--

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