Prevent Pet Suffocation

Spreading awareness of pet suffocation risks

Houston, TX   |

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GuideStar Charity Check

Prevent Pet Suffocation

EIN: 81-5226651


Spreading awareness and educating the public on the suffocation risks our pets face from chip bags and other food packaging.

Ruling year info



Bonnie Harlan

Main address

5773 Woodway Drive Number 10

Houston, TX 77057 USA

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Subject area info

Animal welfare

Population served info


NTEE code info

Animal Protection and Welfare (includes Humane Societies and SPCAs) (D20)

IRS subsection

501(c)(3) Public Charity

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990-N.

Tax forms



Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The major problem is that pets, primarily dogs, suffocate daily in chip bags, snack bags, pet food bags, and other food packaging. A lot of these bags are made from a strong mylar-like material. Once a dog puts his head into a bag, the bag creates a vacuum-like seal around the dog's neck. As the dog tries to breathe, the bag tightens, cutting off the oxygen, and often suffocating the dog. This happens within minutes. The other problem is that most people have never heard of pet suffocation until it happens to their dog, and by then, it is too late.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Suffocation Awareness and Education

Community Awareness and Advocacy to educate the public on the suffocation risks pets face from food packaging

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of press releases developed and distributed

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Suffocation Awareness and Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Number of petition signatures

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Suffocation Awareness and Education

Type of Metric

Context - describing the issue we work on

Direction of Success


Context Notes

This number represents the total number of signatures on the petition to Frito Lay since the petition was launched in 2013. Our goal is to receive at least 50,000 signatures.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

One of the primary goals of Prevent Pet Suffocation, Inc. is to educate the public on the suffocation risks our pets face from chip bags, snack bags, pet food bags, food bags and containers, and other packaging. The other major goal is to reduce the deaths of pets, which are mainly dogs, from pet suffocation.

Prevent Pet Suffocation, Inc. has several strategies to accomplish our goals and mission to prevent pet suffocation. The primary one is an international awareness campaign aimed to spread awareness on the suffocation hazards of food bags and provide safety tips and strategies to prevent pet suffocation within your home. One of the ways this is achieved is through continually engaging and educating the public through various social media outlets including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and our website and Blog.

In addition, we are featured in TV interviews, podcasts, videos, magazine articles, and blogs to help spread our awareness campaign.

Another strategy to prevent pet suffocation is our online petition to Frito Lay to add warning labels to their chip bags to help educate the public on this major risk to their pets. Currently, we have almost 35,000 signatures.

Through fundraising, we are able to maintain a strong social media presence and also produce Public Service Announcements (PSAs), infographics, flyers, videos, etc. for the public to view and use and share with friends, family, vets, rescue groups, etc. As Prevent Pet Suffocation, Inc. has grown, we are contacted frequently by the media for interviews, podcasts, articles, Zoom calls, etc. When a pet owner loses a pet to suffocation, they easily find us on social media and the Internet to share their story which, once posted by us, reaches thousands of people.

Prevent Pet Suffocation has made tremendous progress since it was first formed in 2012. We became a public charity in 2017.

We have over 24,000 followers on Facebook alone, and it is not uncommon for a post to reach 50,000 people.

We have a strong social media presence on all the social media sites, and we have a very comprehensive website.

We have produced professional infographics summarizing the problem and solution, as well as recently produced a professional 1 minute Public Service Announcement (PSA) with a television station that is posted publicly and also sent to TV stations for their use.

A TV video piece on prevent pet suffocation we worked on with CBS recently won an EMMY.

We have hired a PR rep and a TikTok professional to help increase our national presence.

More people globally are now aware of the risks of pet suffocation and how to prevent it.

Our online petition to Frito Lay has almost 50,000 signatures and continues to gather signatures, and then we plan to deliver it to Frito Lay.

We have an ongoing survey about pet suffocation with over 4000 responses, and we plan to publish the results in 2023.

We will be participating in GivingTuesday 2023.

Currently, we are working on a trifold brochure and an infographic to publish our survey results.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, We use it to enhance our messages on pet safety to reach more people and save more pet lives.

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    I don't feel it's been a challenge to get feedback from our followers or other groups.


Prevent Pet Suffocation
Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Prevent Pet Suffocation

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Prevent Pet Suffocation

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization


Bonnie Harlan

Bonnie Harlan founded Prevent Pet Suffocation shortly after her four year old rescue dog, Blue, suffocated in a chip bag in 2011. She has written numerous articles on the subject and appeared in several television and radio interviews to spread awareness. Bonnie has a Master of Liberal Arts from Houston Baptist University and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Arizona.

Prevent Pet Suffocation

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

There are no highest paid employees recorded for this organization.

Prevent Pet Suffocation

Board of directors
as of 07/23/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board chair

Bonnie Harlan

Prevent Pet Suffocation

Term: 2017 -

Michael Harlan

TruHorizon Environmental Solutions

Chase Gugenheim

Galley Beach Restaurant

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Not applicable
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Not applicable
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Not applicable
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Not applicable
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Not applicable

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 6/21/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity


Sexual orientation