Recycling Q&A: What About Water Bottles My Dog Chewed?

Recycling Q&A: What About Water Bottles My Dog Chewed?

  • Editor’s Note: This article is part of a series of recycling Q&A tips from Kane County Recycling Coordinator Jennifer Jarland. Got a question or idea for a recycling tip? Contact Jarland at 630-208-3841 or

Q: Can I Recycle Dog-Chewed Water Bottles?

Tubby, also known as “the world’s greenest dog,” is credited with picking up more than 26,000 plastic water bottles. (PHOTO CREDIT: BBC)

Hi there,

My dogs like chewing up water bottles. Once they’re done with them and cleaned up, is the destroyed bottle still recyclable?


— Lou

A: Not a good idea, due to the sorting process.

Hi Lou!

Well, that’s a new one.

Theoretically, they would still be recyclable, but practically speaking, probably not a good idea because I don’t think chewed bottles could be sorted properly.

Plastic bottles are separated via an optical sorter that uses air to blow the bottles into the correct bin. If the plastic bottle is flattened, it is likely that it will not be correctly sorted.

I would recommend trashing them after being chewed. Thanks for checking!

— Jennifer

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