I would say owning a car. Producing a car consumes lots of resources along with maintenance of the vehicle and overall use. By driving a car you are contributing to air pollution, congestion, and reducing your amount of physical activity. While a dog will emit small numbers of CO2, just like humans, they are far more sustainable. They can be fed natural and organic ingredients, promote exercise, and even steer you away from sustaining your water sucking lawn. Dogs are also great companions and security guards. These are just a few reasons-hope it helps.
The emissions from a car are composed of by products that contribute to air pollution and are a major ingredient in the creation of smog in some large cities. On road motor vehicles produce large amounts of mono-nitrogen oxides that reach with ammonia and moisture which can penetrate deeply into sensitive lung tissue and cause severe damage. Inhalation of such particles may cause or worsen respiratory diseases such as emphysema, bronchitis, and may also aggravate heart disease. Carbon monoxide is the most common type of fatal air poisoning in many countries and 60% of carbon monoxide is caused by on road vehicles. It is colorless, odorless, tasteless, and highly toxic.
Interesting question. At first I thought you may have mistyped cat, and were doing a comparison of household pets, but then I came across this study which reported that dogs in fact have a large carbon footprint. Authors Robert and Brenda Vale argue that including all the resources needed to feed dogs vs all the resources need to build and fuel a SUV, the dog has the larger footprint.
However, other scientists, having done some math themselves, believe their calculations are wrong, and that a dog would have to eat at least twice as much as a human for this to be true.
As an aside, they calculated the carbon footprint of a cat to be comparable to that of a VW Golf, but as mentioned above, take that with a grain of salt.
One study claims that dogs are less eco- friendly than SUVs, but I think they assume several things. One is that dogs eat meat, which is not necessarily true because dogs can be vegan. Yes, just like people, dogs use resources and thus take away from the environment, but allow me to mention a little fact.
Humans and dogs release Oxytocin, which is known to reduce stress and anxiety. Dogs make some of us appreciate nature and make us sympathetic.
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