The raging debate over the use of plastic for pet bowls and pet fountains has focused nearly exclusively on the direct negative effects of plastic on the animals utilizing those bowls, specifically pet fountains and in the pet fountain market, specifically cat fountains.
It offers long been known that plastic water bowls can give cats chin acne, which can manifest symptoms from blackheads to large draining pustules as well as a complete swelling from the lips, but whether it be the plastic itself or the fact that plastic acts like a magnet for bacteria which accumulate inside the scratches that invariably happen in plastic will not be clear. The conclusion of most vets is, “steer clear of plastic water bowls”, and never only because of the chance of chin acne.
In accordance with Ecology Center, an online resource for ecology and community issues, an online resource center, this list of seriously unwanted effects from direct toxicity of plastic is enormous and extreme. A few of these are:
From polyvinylchloride (PVC); Cancers, birth defects, skin illnesses, liver dysfunction
From DEHP, DINP along with other plastic elements; Endocrine dysfunction, bronchial asthma, developmental defects
From Polycarbonate with Bisphenol A #7; Cancer, defense impairment, diabetes
And the list continues on to specify over another half dozens components of plastic materials along with their associated negative effects.
But all of this is just one part of the risks of plastic and using plastic articles. “One of the main issues with plastic”, Ecology Center tells us, “besides there being so much of it-is that it doesn’t biodegrade. No natural process can break it down.”
The negative results of this fact are immeasurable. Particularly affected are marine life (so much plastic eventually ends up in the ocean), including albatross. “Two hundred thousand albatrosses die annually, many from being fed plastic by their parents who mistake it for food” says a Los Angeles Times article.
The side effects of plastics starts off with their production as well as the tons of pollutants that enter the atmosphere, and continues on, potentially, for hundreds of years. Plastic is very resilient that even burying it deep inside the earth doesn’t keep it from impacting environmental surroundings. Currently it accounts for approximately 10 percent of generated waste, most of which is landfilled. But placing plastics in a landfill may just be storing a difficulty in the future, as plastic’s chemicals often sink into nearby land, contaminating groundwater.
In addition, manufacture of plastics is actually a major user of non-renewable fuels. Eight percent of world oil production goes to manufacturing plastics.
Of course plastics have grown to be an absolute necessity and can be an excellent material for long lasting products but many plastic submissions are intended for onetime or short time use and a great number of articles which do not need to get made of plastic – many other materials can be purchased – and better in many ways, are proven harmful to pets and humans. Pet fountains are among these.
In certain areas of consumption and for many products, we now have no choice, but where we all do, we need to exercise our better judgment and avoid plastics which may harm us or our pets. Neal of Plastics Europe said consumers, not lijjxc industry, are responsible. “In my view the responsibility is fairly and squarely on the consumer,” he said.
In the arena of pet fountains, there are metal, glass and ceramic bowls and fountains and any one of these is a far healthier choice spanning a plastic pet fountain. Not only will you as well as your pet be safe through the harmful results of a plastic fountain, you simply will not be contributing to the pollution of the planet when the plastic fountain ceases to operate and must be discarded.