For retailers keen to promote a green and eco-friendly lifestyle for cats, this task has been ameliorated by the large variety of products being designed to reduce a feline’s carbon paw print manufactured across numerous cat-orientated categories.
Illinois-based The Green Pet Shop is an example of the diverse selection of products available, as its inventory includes biodegradable litter boxes, pet wipes, bamboo food bowls, charcoal mats designed to offer relief for aching joints and hemp products that tap into the growing trends of cannabis products that offer pain and stress relief for pets.
“The KatPak is a hooded tray made from heavy duty recycled paper that folds up like an accordion and is 100 percent biodegradable,” explained Larry Wright, president of the company. “It’s designed for apartment-living convenience and, because they pack flat, are ideal for travel.”
Last year, tapping into the growing trend of cannabinoid products for pets, the company introduced its CBD Pet Care Calming and Soothing Lotion. Designed in the form of a gel pen that contains 50 pump applications, the product dispenses 50 “pumps” of precisely 1 milligram of purified CBD that is applied to the cat’s inner ear or any exposed, venous skin.
“Our product is derived from 100 percent organic hemp plants grown in Colorado and has been very well received by both consumers and members of the holistic veterinary community,” Wright said. “A transdermal application allows for complete and much faster absorption compared to edible products that lose a large percentage of the dosage through the digestive process.”
Worldwise, Inc., headquartered in Novato, California, has been committed to environmentally responsible materials since the 1990s.
“Our cat beds and soft toys are manufactured from our proprietary EcoRest fiberfill made from post-consumer recycled plastic bottles,” said Sarah Stone, the company’s director of marketing. “Some of our beds include BeneFoam, a soybean-based foam that is a resilient and comfortable alternative to the petrochemical-based foams typically used in pet bedding.”
The company uses natural sustainable materials such as sisal, jute, seagrass and coconut husks for many of the scratchers in their feline catalog.
“Durable seagrass is an ideal alternative because it is rarely found on furnishings in the same form that it’s found on scratchers, so cats are able to differentiate,” Stone explained. “Woven coconut husks have the same texture as coir doormats and are another scratching surface that cats love.”
Petfusion uses recycled corrugated cardboard on a wooden frame to create their functional feline furniture like their figure eight-shaped Ultimate Cat Scratcher Lounge.
“Apart from scratching, the curved double-decker design makes it easy for cats to nap on it and also play,” explained Kevin Krueger, one of the co-founders of the company.
The company also makes a scratching triangle, which gives a cat options to scratch both vertically and horizontally. It is available in two sizes and gives felines an opportunity to get a good stretch in, too.
Green’s the Future
According to Jane Wasley, brand manager of ökocat litter manufactured by Healthy Pets, the popularity for green cat products is set to sky rocket as it’s being driven by millennial cat owners.
“Millennials are now the largest group of cat owners and research has shown that natural and organic products are very important to them,” Wasley said. “And further, they are willing to pay a premium to give their cats a green lifestyle to match their own. As more and more consumers are educated about the importance of sustainable, biodegradable products that are good for the planet, the natural cat litter category will continue to grow even more. In just two short years, ökocat is now on-shelf in more than 5,000 retail stores. This growth demonstrates both consumer demand for natural, high performance choices and the retailers’ better understanding of the trends and expectations of what today’s cat owners are seeking.”
She added that, while ökocat is available in a variety of different litters, the Natural Clumping Cat Litter in the blue packaging remains the most popular.
From The Field, based in Seattle, Washington, is an eco-friendly cat toy company that uses hemp material for its catnip-filled toy products.
“Many of our toys are filled with a blend of catnip and silver vine, a plant that is popular in Asia with similar stimulating effects to cat nip in its toys,” explained Pascal Bedard, the company’s owner and toy designer. “Interestingly, many cats that don’t react to catnip will react to silver vine instead.”
Catnip is fast becoming one of the most popular organically grown products in the pet space. Many companies, including Bedard’s, are selling it in bud form in containers, in packages to refill toys and also in sachets attached to scratchers to entice cats to try the products for themselves.
“American-grown catnip has a reputation for being ranked amongst the best catnip grown in the world,” Bedard confirmed.