People clearly love having pets and have done so throughout history. The majority of pet owners view their animals as being part of the family. In Australia, approximately 62 per cent of households own a pet— domestic dogs and cats are the most common pets (with 4.8 and 2.8 million dogs and cats, respectively, recorded in 2016).And the desire for pet ownership seems to be increasing, as the dog population rose by 600 000 between 2013 and 2016. Australians spend more than $12.2 billion on pet products and services each year. So we are talking about a massive industry and a whole lot of mouths to feed.Most people feed their dog or cat pre-prepared and processed pet food, and the majority of pet accessories available are made from synthetic and plastic materials. The environmental impacts of owning a pet are often not immediately apparent, but with a considered approach, you can keep the impact of owning a pet to a minimum.