The Sustainable Jungle family has grown!
If you haven’t heard the somewhat belated news, we’re now proud pet parents to Taavi, a fluffy Finnish Lapphund. Thankfully he does speak English though his hearing is selective. We’re working on it.
While training Taavi to sit and stay over the last nine months, we’ve also been training ourselves in pet sustainability. The aim, of course, is to become zero waste dog owners.
A zero waste dog?!
Fellow dog owners out there probably think we’re barking mad. It’s actually easier than you think, especially with the help of so many eco friendly pet products and bamboo pet products now available to modern dog owners.
And one of the most important pet products that any owner worth his doggy biscuits should care about is a dog collar. But preferably a sustainable and eco-friendly bamboo pet collar.
Collars are not only Bingo’s bling-o, but an important training tool, identifier, and in many places, a legal requirement to take your dog out in public.
As mentioned, there are so many sustainable options out there that with a bit of research it’s never been easier to be a conscious consumer. So, with that in mind, we wanted to show you some of the best bamboo dog collar options.
We wish we’d had a list like this before we stocked up on gear for Taavi as we’ve made tons of unsustainable mistakes along the way. We hope this helps you on your sustainable doggy journey!
LET’S START WITH FROM BAMBOO DOG COLLAR BASICS.
Why are we howling at the bamboo?
Simply put, bamboo pet products (in general) are sustainable because bamboo is.
Growing it is low impact and requires very little water. Harvesting it is even lower impact, as bamboo shoots are harvested without actually killing the root of the plant. That makes it one of the fastest replenishing resources on earth, able to produce tons of raw materials with very little footprint.
In fact, it’s actually a ravenous carbon consumer, producing more oxygen out of CO2 that other plants and trees.
Bamboo fibers can then transformed into a whole array of eco friendly pet products, from soft goods such as bamboo dog collars and bamboo dog toys, to hard ones like bamboo dog bowls.
Bamboo pet products are even considered zero waste because the bamboo components are compostable in any form if they get chewed up or destroyed. As always be careful to separate and appropriately dispose of uncompostable components.
Aside from being eco friendly, bamboo dog collars are pet safe and designed with canine comfort in mind. Not only is bamboo soft and hypoallergenic, but non-toxic and all natural for dogs that confuse their collar for a chew toy.
You can now see why we’re total converts for all things bamboo related (including pet paraphernalia).
THE BEST BASIC BAMBOO DOG COLLARS
Wagging Green Pet Shop
Our pick of the litter for the best bamboo dog collars are those made by The Wagging Green Pet Shop.
We’re especially impressed by their huge selection of not only different colors and designs, but different types of collars, including both single layer and double layer organic bamboo dog collars. All hand sewn in the U.S.A.
But our favorite has to be the Martingale collar (more info on this below under Quick Control Dog Collars) which has zero plastic components – the only eco friendly dog collar we could find that has this attribute.
As far as ethical business practices go, Wagging Green also gets the tail wag of approval. They’re as excited about bamboo alternatives as dogs are for a ride in the car – check out their handy bamboo fact sheet.
Because they’re so concerned about end-of-life sustainability of pet products, they offer a recycling program for their old collars in case you don’t have the ability to compost them yourself. If you recycle a bamboo collar, they give a discount on a new collar.
As a company, they’re not only certified organic (check out their certification here), but also donate 5% of company profits to various animal welfare organizations. Their company motto seems pretty on point: “Good for our earth, great for our pets!”
Molly Mutt is another sustainable pet company.
Their bamboo dog collars come in a variety of colors and patterns so you can get the perfect custom bamboo dog collar to suit your pup’s personality.
While their bamboo dog collars are outstandingly cute and quality, their specialty seems to be their cotton canvas eco friendly dog bed duvet covers.
The basic concept of these covers is that you provide the stuffing yourself, from upcycled textiles you have lying around the house (think holey socks, old towels, holey linen and the like). This simultaneously cuts down on landfill waste, extra filling production, and carbon emissions from shipping a fully stuffed pet bed (by 70% actually!).
Happy Pet Products
As we mentioned above, our only gripe on the above collars (except the Martingale collar) is that the front clip looks to be made out of plastic which is not ideal.
BAMBOO DOG HARNESSES
While we’re on the subject of collars we may as well look into harnesses which are great for active scenarios.
Harnesses, especially step-in dog harnesses, put less or even no pressure on a dog’s throat, so they can safely and comfortably walk you.
Taavi’s puppy trainer suggested this for training and we’ve never looked back. We also didn’t like the idea of tugging on the little guy’s throat. What can we say we’re pretty soft doggy parents.
Wagging Green Pet Shop (once again)
Get one when they’re a puppy and apparently you’ll never have to buy a new one! Unless of course you get a Bernese Mountain Dog or Great Dane.
Even around the house, bamboo dog harnesses have their purpose. You can think of them as bamboo dog collars with handles.
The back T-strap can easily be used a fast handle if you need to hold back your pup when the mailman pays a visit or your kids drop some tasty treats on the floor.
Though, we usually let Taavi help out with spilled goods 😉
BAMBOO QUICK CONTROL DOG COLLAR
About Quick Control Dog Collars
Quick control dog collars are useful, particularly if you have a younger pup in training or an especially rowdy dog.
Quick control dog collars, AKA Martingale Collars (as we mentioned above), are designed with an extra wide neck strap that’s attached on both sides to a fully enclosed second loop of webbing on the back, where the leash gets attached.
When the leash tightens, it makes the neck loop slightly smaller indicating your dog needs to pay attention. The best part is that it does it without actually choking like traditional buckle collars or poking like choke chains.
In that way, they provide even more control in a pet safe way.
One of the most frustrating things we found in our search for the best bamboo dog collars, was that a company called “Bamboo” makes lots of dog collars…. Except they’re not made of bamboo!
So when searching ”bamboo quick control dog collar”, imagine our disappointment when we read “Nylon” on the materials list.
On that note, searching for a quick control bamboo dog collar won’t yield much. Instead, you’ll want to search for a bamboo Martingale dog collar, which sounds a bit more fancy anyway!
Wagging Green Petshop (we’re big fans you can tell)
Wagging Green Pet Shop’s Martingale bamboo dog collars come in paws-itively playful prints that are almost as cute as the dogs wearing them. With a durable and high quality double layer of webbing, they’re the closest thing you get to a deluxe dog collar on a budget.
REFLECTIVE BAMBOO DOG COLLAR
About Reflective Bamboo Dog Collars
If you often find yourself walking your dog early in the morning or after dark (because the good old 9-to-5 can be ruff like that), a reflective bamboo dog collar can add another level to safety for both you and your pup.
Without getting too deep, one of our greatest fears is if something happened to Taavi. Though, it’s more likely that an accident would involve a bicycle than a car (we live near a bike path). Touch wood. I guess that’s why we’re a little bit helicopter (ish).
So a reflective bamboo dog collar makes a lot of sense if you need a bit more visibility on or near the road.
Unfortunately, we couldn’t find a truly sustainable reflective bamboo dog collar. The only option we found is Bark Brite which is made of a combination of bamboo and neoprene (not sustainable) with reflective trim and an LED light up buckle (which is plastic).
So we’d suggest ideally finding some upcycled reflective threads or taping from your local charity or thrift store and doing a bit of a DIY. Or get one of those flashing LED bike lights which are USB chargeable and fix that to your eco friendly collar.
PERSONALIZED BAMBOO DOG COLLAR
About Personalized Bamboo Dog Collars
We all love a bit of personalization. Except when it comes to registration plates right? Just kidding. No judgement.
One of the most numerous types of bamboo dog collars are bamboo dog collars with names sewn right into the webbing. These embroidered bamboo dog collars have two-fold sustainability; they’re not only made of bamboo, but replace the need for a plastic dog tag with identifying info.
Though, some councils (at least in Australia) may require a particular tag.
Whiskazz and Pawzz
Some of the best embroidered bamboo dog collars we could find are those by Whiskazz and Pawzz on Etsy. They include both your dog’s name and your phone number just in case they ever go missing.
While hard to find if you live outside the U.S., Orvis also makes personalized dog bamboo collars. But what we really like about Orvis is that they uphold a 5% for Nature policy, through which they pledge to donate 5% of pre-tax profits to various conservation and wildlife initiatives.
Their current project is fighting the proposed Pebble Mine in Alaska’s Bristol Bay, a project that could gravely endanger salmon spawning streams.
Snazzy Fido also makes an embroidered organic bamboo dog collar. At only $10 with an $8 leash add-on option, these are definitely the most affordable personalized bamboo collars on the market. Though based in the U.S., they also ship worldwide.
There are of course a bunch of custom bamboo dog collars on Amazon but just make sure they aren’t made of composite materials that aren’t sustainable (and compostable).
HEMP DOG COLLAR
About Hemp Dog Collars
We know, hemp isn’t bamboo, but it’s a similarly sustainable material that’s a great second option if you’re having trouble finding the right bamboo dog collar.
Hemp is also a plant and like anything of biological origin, it composts. While it can’t be live harvested like bamboo, it does take less water to grow than even organic cotton so production has a much lower impact on the environment.
The best hemp dog collars are even more popular than those made of bamboo, since they’ve been on the market a bit longer.
The best hemp dog collars we’ve found are those by Wigglywoos Pet, which are all-natural down to the tea stained coloration. We particularly love their Just Hemp Step-In Dog Harness, that’s easy to put on and applies no throat pressure.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON BAMBOO DOG COLLARS
While the bamboo dog collar (and generally the bamboo pet product) industry has not yet hit critical mass, it’s definitely headed in the right direction.
Of course, we’re thrilled there are already so many bamboo options, we’re still drooling for more.
As canine-loving consumers, it’s our responsibility to bump the demand so the supply will match. So let’s put our money where our snout is and think twice about the impact of something as simple as shopping for a dog collar.
After all, zero waste pet parenting starts with something as simple as an eco friendly collar.
Because the burgeoning world of bamboo dog collars is still so new, we know we might have missed some stellar start-up options out there, despite how much we tried to provide a complete guide.
If you know of any other bamboo collar companies (maybe you even make them yourself!) give us a bark!