Animal care is a huge part of UK life and business. From livestock farming to veterinary care, stable yards to horse racing, rescue centres to zoos, animal care is at the heart of many different types of businesses. If you work in the animal care industry, you’ll be only too aware of the huge amounts of water needed every day.

Maximising water efficiency is therefore vital for any business that involves looking after animals. By finding ways of becoming more water efficient, your business could save hundreds of thousands of litres of water every year, with consequent cost savings.

Livestock farming

There are many ways that livestock farmers can improve water efficiency, including the use of rainwater and grey water to wash down barns, sheds and yards. There are also ways of using the farm’s natural resources to reduce the amount of water the farm needs to buy from the grid, such as building a reservoir to collect water or utilising a borehole on land belonging to the farm.

Zoos and safari parks

Zoos and safari parks use a lot of water to serve the needs of human visitors as well as to take care of their animals. And with zoos now providing more natural habitats for the animals, together with growing more plants and flowers to make the places more attractive for humans, there is a massive need for water. Making more efficient use of water could save a substantial amount of money.

Water efficiency measures include grey water recycling, where rainwater and the water from sinks, showers, dishwashers and washing machines is treated and used to wash down enclosures and walkways and water plants. Grey water recycling will not only save money on the amount of clean water being drawn from the system it will also reduce the amount of wastewater your business pays to dispose of. Other water efficiency measures zoos and safari parks could implement include the installation of water-saving toilets and urinals, and sensor taps.

Water efficiency for small businesses in the animal care industry

Whatever the size of your animal care business, whether you run a stables, cattery or veterinary practice, there are always water efficiency measures you can take. These could be as simple as educating staff and customers about the need to conserve water by making sure taps and hoses are turned off when water isn’t being used. Download our free water efficiency guide for more information.

Check for leaks

The implementation of leak-detection and prevention measures could help save significant amounts of water. The best way to detect an underground leak on your land or property is to install water meters. By understanding what your normal usage is, you will quickly be able to identify problems and put them right before too much water has been wasted. In 2021, we fitted around 5,000 Automatic Meter Reading devices free of charge to eligible customers. By giving businesses the ability to identify and repair leaks as soon as they occur, we estimate this will save those customers, in total, a potential £9 million a year on their water bills.

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