Pet safe ice melter products aren't just better for your pets, they're also considered more eco-friendly, environmentally safer, and less corrosive to concrete, wood, and metal. Since little to no salt (sodium) ingredients are used, your pets and your concrete will be much less likely to "get sick".
Your pet, whether it's a dog or cat, can irritate their paws by walking on the small salt pellots, especially if their paws are dry and cracked due to the cold weather.
But what is more dangerous to your pets is when they ingest the salt by eating the snow or ice, or by licking their paws.
Most ice melters and concrete deicers contain sodium chloride, potassium chloride or magnesium chloride in some sort of combination. Some health issues for pets than can arise after ingesting chloride based ice melters are; nausea, increased urination, irregular blood pressure, dehydration, and neurological issues.
Some other ingredients found in concrete deicing pellots that are harmful to pets are; calcium carbonate and calcium magnesium acetate. These chemicals can cause abdominal pain, vomiting, irritated eyes and excess salivating.
What you need to know is your pet would only have to ingest a certain amount of ice melt depending on its’ weight to get very sick (the lethal dose of sodium chloride is 4G/kg or .14oz/2.2lb of body weight). So a 100 lb. dog would get very sick or possibly die if it ate approximately 6.5oz of sodium chloride ice melt.
The ingredients you look for in a pet friendly ice melter are urea and propylene glycol. Urea is a bio-degradable chemical that is most commonly used in fertilizers.
Propylene glycol is an approved food additive for dog food under the category of animal feed and is generally recognized as safe for dogs as well as humans.
Some pet safe, eco-safe, concrete deicers are: Safe Paw Ice Melter, Morton Safe-T-Pet Pet Care Ice Melt and Happy Paws Ice Melter.
According to Safe Paw they're the only 100% salt-free ice melter on the market. They also claim they're ice melter is 100% safe for pets, children, floor surfaces, and the environment.
Safe Paw's pellets are green to make it easier for you to distinguish it from rock salt and calcium chloride pellets.
Safe Paw benefits include:
Although I do think Safe Paw is an excellent deicer if you have pets. I do not recommend using any kind of ice melter on concrete that's less than a year old and never on decorative or stamped concrete. You can use sand or kitty litter in those cases.