How to Make an Eco-Friendly Home and Life for Your Pet

Being environmentally conscious is very important these days, thanks to phenomena like global warming. And that means you should take an environmentally friendly stance in all parts of your life including your home. If you have a pet who lives with you at home, you can incorporate eco-friendly products and processes to ensure your pet is well cared for, and that he makes little impact on the environment as possible.

Here are some ways you can make an eco-friendly home for your pet.

Invest in an Eco-friendly Pet House

Your dog may want a pet house he can hang out in outside, or when he needs a place to hide away inside. Consider investing in an eco-friendly dog house so you don’t choose a shelter made from materials that tax the environment. Consider a dog house made from salvaged wood or a plastic one made from recycled materials. Buying a green dog house will ensure that your dog’s little shelter didn’t use unnecessary resources.

Compost Your Pet’s Poop

Instead of tossing your dog’s poop in the trash, consider composting it (just not for your edible plants!) This ensures that the poop and the plastic bags you might otherwise use to pick it up with are not going to clog up a landfill.

Feed Your Pets Food That Is Sustainable

When you think about what you’re going to feed your pet, make sure you only consider food that’s from sustainable sources. You can find a dog food that is made by companies who only use sustainable ingredients, or you can consider making your own dog food and treats using food from local, sustainable farms and markets or even by growing your own food!

Adopt Your Pet

Rather than going to a pet store or a breeder to buy your beloved animal, head to a shelter instead and adopt a pet. By adopting a pet, you can reduce the chances that places like puppy mills will continue to operate and this will ultimately reduce the number of resources those businesses require. Adopting a pet is also a generally good way to ensure that all animals already alive are cared for and that none have to be put down by a kill shelter because they couldn’t find a loving home.

Get Your Pet Spayed or Neutered

Make sure you get your pet spayed or neutered so they don’t get end up getting pregnant (or getting someone else’s pet pregnant), and contributing more to the world’s animal population. By making sure your pet doesn’t add more animals to the world, you can help reduce the number of animals that end up requiring resources to stay alive — and those that end up creating more waste in the world. When you take your animal to the vet for a regular treatment like the top Heartgard plus for dogs, ask about getting him or her spayed or neutered — your vet can give you all the information you need to know about how and when to have it done.

If you want to have a pet but also make a minimal impact on the environment, you should try to focus on creating a green pet home. By taking some eco-friendly steps to create a comfortable pet environment, you can enjoy your furry friend while also having the knowledge that you haven’t harmed the planet while caring for him.

 

The Environmental Impact Of Decreasing Bee Populations

As a species, human beings are beginning to wake up to the importance of insects to our planet and our ecosystem. And most importantly, people are gradually leaning that bees, in particular, are vital to the human race and our world. But why are bee populations decreasing?

Reports of bees dying off are becoming more and more frequent, and a lot more alarming in recent years. Bees are an important part of global food production, so for them to die out would be a huge problem. This is why pest control experts like Catch-it in East London, when carrying out stinging insect pest control, will typically just relocate bees’ nests, and not exterminate them.

Distribution maps of bees are showing major decrease in the range of bees covering the planet, and in some places they are completely extinct. There are more and more reports of widespread die-offs, with honeybee hives being abandoned after colony-collapse disorder. But why are the bees dying, and what will the consequences be?

A diet without any bee related, insect-pollinated food would be short on a lot of nutrients, and make life pretty boring. And there are some reasons for why this may become an issue in the future.

Worldwide, there is less land available to support the bees. Farmland is being stripped of everything but the crops that will make the cash, so there is no flowery food for bees. In many developed countries there’s just nowhere left for bees to go.

Another problem is that honeybee diseases are spreading. Hives are being shipped all over the world, and stowaway bacteria, fungi and parasites go with them. These diseases lead to colony-collapse disorder.

Intensive farming using fungicides herbicides and pesticides has also affected the bees. At certain doses, particular pesticides can be incredibly harmful to honeybees, even causing death.

A combination of all of these problems are causing a worldwide loss of bees. More and more studies are being done so that we can save the honeybee from going completely extinct. A lot of what is to blame will remain a mystery, but if we can change some of the problems then the honeybee can be saved.

The Effects Of Pesticides On Bees Worldwide

A particular pesticide group called neonicotinoid (NNI) has made its way onto crops worldwide. Whilst these pesticides protect the crops, and are most commonly used on rape seed, the impact of them may be affecting the bees. Pest control should be for pests, and bees are far from it.

When these chemicals are applied to crops, they are absorbed into the plant, making everything including the pollen and nectar poisonous to insects. However scientists have said the NNI have had a great environmental impact on plants and animals.

The loss of bees is potentially damaging to the agriculture because of the role they play in pollinating our plants. The chemical NNI was being used a lot in the 2000s, but the EU banned it from April 2013. Whilst Britain comply with this ruling, they don’t agree with the science behind the problem.

Concern has been mainly focused at the honeybee because their population has declined by around 25% in the last few years. Numerous studies have directly linked bee death to the use of NNI. Loss of habitat and changing land can also be attributed to the bee population decreasing.

Researchers claim that neonicotinoids interfere with a bee’s brain, which limits their ability to learn and remember what food they should be eating. The pesticide has been linked to a sort of bee epilepsy, and breeding activity has also been reduced.

Critics have claimed that a ban on the use of NNI would put crops at risk and harm the economy. Chemical firms think it is unnecessary, and they don’t want to lose out on profits.

In light of the government not being too keen on the ban of these bee-killing pesticides, who knows what legislation may come into play over the next few years. One thing is for sure, bees need to be protected and saved.

4 Helpful Things You Can Say to a Suicidal or Depressed Friend

They were celebrities at the pinnacle of achievement in their fields. Legions of fans and industry insiders worldwide respected them, yet both took their own lives last week.

No one is immune to suicidal thoughts — not even a successful public figure like Anthony Bourdain or Kate Spade. Suicide and depression know no boundaries of race, class, gender identity, sexual orientation, or national origin. Statistically, it’s likely you know at least one person who struggles with suicidal thoughts. In a typical high school classroom of 20 students, at least 3 have seriously considered taking their lives in the past year.

What to say when a depressed friend reaches out

This concerns most of us who question our ability to respond to someone in need. Will we know what to say if that friend, neighbour, or student reaches out to us? Will we be able to help?

As a trusted confidant, you can show someone who’s struggling you care with only a few simple words.

  • Are you thinking of taking your life right now?

If your friend has already put together a suicide plan or is about to take their life, immediately call 911 and get emergency assistance. You should let trained professionals help rather than try to handle it yourself.

  • When did you start feeling this way?

When a suicidal person reaches out for help, they really want someone to hear their story. Asking open-ended questions — and listening — lets them do that. Don’t be judgmental or dispense advice. Simply pay attention and affirm their experience.

  • You’re not alone. I care about you, and I’m here to help.

Why would someone struggling with suicidal tendencies reach out to us? They’re in a battle for their lives, and they don’t want to fight it alone any more. Telling them that we’re there, we care, and we want to help assures them they’re not alone any more. It also opens the door for them to be more specific about how you can help.

  • Have you considered getting professional help?

When someone confides to us about their personal battle with depression and suicidal tendencies, it shows they trust us, so many friends and teachers wonder if they should keep this information secret. The answer is emphatical NO.

In fact, the goal of any discussion with a suicidal person is to get them to seek professional help. If our friend had malignant cancer, we would encourage them to go to the hospital, even if they were reluctant at first. It’s the same with a life-threatening condition like suicide.

We shouldn’t give up if the person resists. We can tell them we’re asking because we care. We can offer to help them find and schedule an appointment with a mental health counsellor. We can go with them.

What to do if your friend doesn’t reach out directly

Many times, a depressed or suicidal friend won’t approach you directly and ask for help. Recent studies have uncovered a correlation between excessive time online and depression. If you notice a significant change in someone’s behaviour (if they seem habitually withdrawn, down, disengaged, or angry) you might want to initiate a conversation with one of these leading questions.

4 Questions to Break The Ice When You Notice a Change in Someone’s Behavior

  • You don’t seem yourself lately. [Add observational details]. Are you all right?
  • I’m concerned because I’ve noticed a change in you. [Add observational details]. What’s going on, and what might help you feel better?
  • You seem upset. Do you need to vent? I’m here for you, and I’ll listen.
  • You seem to be going through something tough. Can I do anything to support you right now?

Keep Your Pest Control Green With These 10 Tips

Doing home pest control is something that we will all need to do at some point in our lives. No matter how clean your home is or how much you do to keep pests away, you’ll always end up having an infestation eventually. When this happens, you need effective solutions to make the problem disappear.

Now when you think of pest control, you may think of the nasty chemicals that go with many common pest control techniques. This isn’t true though. You can control pests using green methods that keep the environment cleaner and your home safer for pets and children.

London based experts Empire Pest Control have advised us on some of the best green pest control tips that work on getting rid of pests in a friendly way. And they don’t cost too much either.

1. Know what you’re dealing with

Knowing exactly what pest you dealing with goes a long way in successfully exterminating them. It’s important to know what pest you’re dealing with because one method of pest control is not universal to all pests. What works for one may not work on another.

2. Pest proof your home

If you don’t ever want to use chemical pest control, it’s important to keep your home as clean as possible. Making your home impenetrable to pests mean you won’t have a problem with infestations. There are multiple ways you can pest proof, such as disposing of rubbish properly. All bins should be kept far away from your home, and emptied as often as possible to deter pests.

3. Keep everything dry

Pests are always on the hunt for great water sources. Don’t provide them with one. Make sure that you don’t have any standing water or water leaks around your home. This includes in your garden, where they may be pests lurking that you don’t know about.

4. Do some home maintenance

Providing pests with entry points into your home is a big no-no. Look around the house and any cracks, holes, and leaks should be fixed. These are the access points pests will use to get into your home easily.

5. Try some green pest products

Although they may not be as effective as professional pest control, there are green pest control products available to buy. This may be citrus spays, plant-based sprays, clothes moth traps or insecticidal soaps. These methods do cost more money, but if you are in a hurry to treat a problem it may be the best solution.

6. Use some cedar oil

This essential oil is a brilliant insect repellent and a completely green option. Much like citronella, it can be applied to lots of different surfaces around the home. You can even bathe your pests in it to ward off fleas. It’s effective against pests like bed bugs and spiders. It smells nice and has no harmful effects on the skin.

7. Nonlethal traps

For more furrier pests like mice and rats, you can use non-lethal traps to catch them without having to kill them. You later can release them far away from your home. There’s a lot of non-lethal traps available to buy, each for different types of pests.

8. Soapy water

A bit of soap with some water has been a long-time favorite to exterminate ants. If you have frequent ant problems, you can pour it along the affected areas. Or you can use a spray bottle to control smaller infestations when they appear. It’s also cheap which makes it even more appealing.

9. Use food as part of traps

A lot of different green pest control methods often really on plants and foods you can buy in the shops. Using herbs like mint leaves really deters pests such as flies from your home. You could even plant natural pesticide herbs in your garden to really ward off the pests. Then you have your own herb garden and a pest barrier.

10. Use some citrus

There are a lot of pests that hate the smell of citrus and won’t go anywhere near it. Using a little citrus oil in a spray bottle with water will repel a lot of pests from getting into your home. Plus you can spray it anywhere in your home, and you’ll be left with a nice lemony scent.