Seasonal down the drain: Washing down the dog days of summer.
Have you ever considered that down the drain product risks change with the seasons? With summer winding down, the risks associated with suntan lotions (UV filters) and mosquito repellants washing down the drain are starting to slow down and we’re entering the next season. For example, did you know that Fall can be one of the worst times of year for fleas and ticks on dogs and cats? Fleas and ticks are common pet nuisances, and protecting our beloved four-legged companions from these tiny tormentors is a priority for pet owners, the use of flea and tick medications, while effective in safeguarding our pets' health, may pose unintended environmental risks.
Bathing dogs (or cat if you really want a challenge) after applying a flea or tick treatment can wash off down the drain and ultimately end up in your local wastewater treatment plant. Waiting the appropriate amount of time before bathing your pet (read the product label) and waiting to wash your pet’s bedding can reduce the transport of residues down the drain.
Unfortunately, our tick life cycles seem to be increasing with our warmer winters. The temperatures need to be sustained for a number of days below 10 degrees F to kill ticks. Therefore, it’s in our best interest to be mindful of the medicines we use on our pets through these extended seasons. By consulting with veterinarians, exploring eco-friendly alternatives, and adopting responsible medication practices, we can minimize the unintended ecological consequences of flea and tick control while keeping our furry friends safe and healthy. In this way, we can protect both our pets and the planet they call home.