Prevent Pet Suffocation

August 18, 2018 at 11:11 pm

By Bonnie Harlan


Arriving home, my rescue dog Blue was not at the door to greet me. Instead, I saw a bag of paper trash strewn across the kitchen floor scattered amidst some toppled over holiday decorations. I finally found Blue lying motionless upstairs with a Cheetos bag encased over his head. Screaming, I pulled the chip bag off of his head, but it was too late. He had horrifically suffocated in a chip bag. Something I had never heard of. I soon realized it was an all too common occurrence. Losing my beautiful dog Blue is what inspired me to start “Prevent Pet Suffocation”, a website and Facebook page dedicated to educating the public on the suffocation risks our pets face from chip bags and other food packaging.


Many of these bags are made from a strong mylar-like material which keeps snacks fresher but can be deadly to your pet, especially dogs. When a curious dog puts his head into the bag hunting for crumbs, the bag creates a vacuum-like seal around his neck. As he tries to breathe, the bag tightens around his neck, cutting off the oxygen. Most dogs start to panic then frantically run around until they collapse and die, often within minutes.


Like I was, many people are not aware these chip bags and other food packaging like cereal bag liners, pet food liners, and popcorn bags are a suffocation hazard to their pets. By spreading awareness, we are saving the lives of dogs.


To help prevent pet suffocation:

  1. Keep all chip bags and food bags safely stored away from your dog’s reach. Cut them up after use.
  2. Keep all trash can lids tightly fastened or behind a cabinet, especially in the kitchen.
  3. Keep kitchen pantry door closed.
  4. Learn CPR for pets.
  5. Do not allow your pets to roam freely in the house while away.
  6. Alert your friends and family about the suffocation dangers of bags.
  7. Lobby to companies like Frito Lay and other snack, cereal, and dog food manufacturers to put warning labels on their bags.


For more information, please visit my website and my Facebook page. I also have an online petition to Frito Lay requesting warning labels be added to their bags.


Please keep your pet safe, and help prevent pet suffocation!