It’s always fun to browse the toy section at your local pet supply store. When faced with the assortment of shapes and colors there’s an important question to ask: is that toy cruelty-free?
Cat and dog toys frequently contain hide, fur and feathers—usually the by-products of fur and factory farms, both known for their deplorable living conditions. Toys from China may even contain dog and cat fur or skin!
But there are many toys available that you and your companion can feel good about. Ask your local pet stores for cruelty-free recommendations, and research the company that makes your pet’s favorite toy. For example, Cat Claws, Inc., and Met Pet make a wide assortment of cruelty-free toys that cats love, including bat-and-swat balls and interactive wire wand toys.
Even better are companies that use recycled or organic products in their cruelty-free toys. Planet Dog makes durable dog toys from recycled plastics and gives a portion of profits to animal and environmental welfare groups.
Do you have a special catnip sock mouse, or a tug or ball toy you make for your pet from cruelty-free items? Now is your chance to share your creation with the world! Send in a description (no more than 100 words, please) of your homemade toy along with a picture. Entries will be carefully considered by PAWS animal care experts, and judged on creativity and durability.
The winner will receive a $50 PAWS gift certificate, and two runners-up will each receive a $25 PAWS gift certificate, redeemable toward PAWS’ new logo gear! The winning entries will also be featured in PAWS spring magazine and at www.paws.org.
Mail your contest entry and photo by January 15, 2006 to:
PAWS Cruelty-Free Pet Toy Contest
P.O. Box 1037
Lynnwood, WA 98046
or email your entry (along with an electronic high-resolution photo in jpeg format) to: firstname.lastname@example.org