Wednesday, November 29, 2023
black catscat photographsdaily photojelly bean

How Is Your Carbon Pawprint?

Evening Bean
Evening Bean

Jelly Bean says he had a pretty good Earth Day.

He conserved a lot of energy by napping as much as possible, so much energy that he could probably cash in what he conserved to get himself some really good treats, or even some quality ‘nip. He even cuddled up with a brother or two so they could all stay warmer without turning on the furnace on this shockingly snowy April day (but he’s not sharing his treats or nip, if he gets them).

And he knows he used sustainable litter in his box—he’s really gotten to like the wood pellets because he can dig and dig and dig in the box and make a lot of noise and not breathe dust, and then later he can toss an unused pellet out of the box and play with it, a great example of reuse!Litter pellets become toys, and sustainable toys at that.

And then he’s got his raw diet from local sources, even though his human had to drive to go and get it, but on the other hand he eats less so she doesn’t have to drive as often. And he had the water in his bowls and his fountain filtered by his human.

He’s feeling pretty good about himself and his carbon pawprint today. He should even probably get some sort of an award for all his hard work and sacrifice.

Now it’s time for another nap while he waits for the phone call from the award center.

Things you can do to help your cats with their carbon pawprints

Our cats can only use what we give them to use so it’s up to use to help reduce waste and use products that are recycled or have the least impact on our environment. One of the biggest changes you can make for the environment in particular is to stop using clay litter. I’ve worked with a number of environmental clients for year and learned about 15 years ago that cat litter is strip-mined, one of the most environmentally destructive types of mining because it works from the soil surface down to the mineral creating a huge pit, piling the overburden in other areas that often cause landslides or destroy streams and the pit is often not remediated. On top of that, the litter itself can’t be recycled in any way and ends up in a landfill.

When I had eight, ten, twelve…or more cats in the house I used more litter than I can estimate, regular and scoopable, always clay. Right about the time I got tired of carrying home 40 pound bags of clay litter every week I decided I was going to look for an alternative. I started with recycled newspaper litter, then a few years later the owner of the Agway where I shopped told me about wood stove pellets which worked even better and were less expensive. I also tried all the plant-based and silica gel crystal type litters I could find but always came back to the wood or newspaper pellets for the scent, natural or artificial, that came along with the litter and the issue with dampness in my basement causing mold or mildew developing on the litter and reducing clumping ability. I have slipped a bag of clay litter in here or there when I needed litter and it was all I could find but we’ve all gotten used to the pellets.

So if you use clay, consider the alternatives you find in the story where you shop. Carefully try them, always making changes gradually for your cats and leaving a box of the litter they’d been using handy to avoid any possible litterbox issues.

Aside from litter, consider these:

  • Try to buy goods in larger quantities or in bulk to reduce driving, reduce cost and possibly reduce packaging.
  • Choose items that have recyclable or sustainable packaging.
  • Use pet waste bags for cat litter or doggy clean ups that are biodegradable and made from a renewable and/or sustainable material.
  • Clean litterboxes and litter areas as well as the rest of your house with safe, non-toxic cleaners and odor eliminators, even using common household substances in place of purchased commercial cleaners.
  • Likewise with pet grooming products, stay with non-toxic products made from natural sustainable ingredients that are certified safe for pets.
  • And use brushes made of recycled rubber, plastic and other recycled materials.
  • Use flea and tick products carefully, only when necessary, avoiding any excess product that might be flushed down a drain or spilled on soil in your yard where it could run off into a stream.
  • Choose accessories such as collars and leashes and beds made of upcycled, downcycled or in any way recycled, sustainable or renewable material such as cotton, hemp, recycled polyester or rubber.
  • Choose certified organic catnip and treats, or make and grow your own.
  • Recycle household items for cat toys like cardboard boxes, paper and paper shopping bags—if your cat hasn’t done that for you already.
  • And no kidding—recycle a pet — adopt a cat from your local animal shelter or a rescue.
  • And most important: have your cat spayed or neutered to avoid the burden an overpopulation of homeless pets has on society and the earth.

Also read an Earth Day essay from last year.

 . . . . . . .

Posted on Facebook today

A similar theme!

“So Sunshine, it’s Earth Day. How are you planning to celebrate? “
“I’m going to conserve as much energy as possible and sleep all day. “
“But you do that every day. “
“I’m waiting for my conservation award. “
Happy Earth Day! We’ve had rain and snow and sun and wind, hoping to enjoy the hail and locusts another day.

Mr. Sunshine and Jelly Bean discuss their Earth Day plans.
Mr. Sunshine and Jelly Bean discuss their Earth Day plans.

Browse some rescued cats and kittens!


All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.

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© 2015 | | Published by Bernadette E. Kazmarski
Weekly schedule of features:
Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life
Monday: Adoptable Cats, TNR & Shelters
Tuesday: Rescue Stories
Wednesday: Commissioned Portrait or Featured Artwork
Thursday: New Merchandise
Friday: Book Review, Health and Welfare, Advocacy
Saturday: Your Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Living Green With Pets, Creating With Cats
And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun!



From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, factual articles and fictional stories, "The Creative Cat" offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

3 thoughts on “How Is Your Carbon Pawprint?

  • guys….we conserved energeez az well…we sleeped all de live long day N getted up onlee a few timez
    ta snax, chow down, eat, use it, N get sum waterz….N we had snows two N we finded a fishin werm carcasss
    in de garage !! ♥♥♥ 🙂

  • Jelly Bean is such a cutie 🙂
    It is good to find ways to take care of our planet.
    Happy Earth Day.(yesterday)

    Purrs Georgia and Julie,
    Treasure and JJ

  • bluemoonalone

    Glad Bean had a good Earth Day..great advice for everyday..Can’t believe you had snow there!!


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