Plastic Bag Hazard


You’re in the checkout line, and you’re asked “paper or plastic,” do say “paper” (or bring your own shopping bag). It’s not only about the environment, it’s also about our pets.

In Rwanda, Africa we noticed there wasn’t a plastic bag to be found blowing in the wind. The capital city of Kigali of just under a million people has zero plastic bags, and is noticeably cleaner. And in coastal areas it’s evident that around the world plastic bags are damaging to animals who live in the water, from seabirds to sea turtles, even dolphins and whales. But how about your puppy or kitty cat?

While it’s uncommon, dogs and cats are reported to choke on these bags. It may not happen every day, but prevention is always best.

The bags are crinkly and often smell like food. It’s theorized that cats are especially attracted as fish oils are thought to be used to make some plastic bags. Hence this may encourage animals, especially cats, to even ingest bags.

Obviously, someone was there with a camera to shoot this – so nothing bad could really happen. However, this video illustrates how quickly our pets may get wrangled and strangled.

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Steve Dale is a certified animal behavior specialist who has been a trusted voice in the world of pet health for over 20 years. You have likely heard him on the radio, read him in print and online, and seen him speaking at events all over the world. His contributions to advancing pet wellness have earned him many an award and recognition around the globe.

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