Euthabag - Depart with Dignity
A body bag honoring the bond
EUTHABAG supports the AVMA Companion Animal Aftercare Policy that underlines the importance of sensitive handling of pets after their passing, the importance of the choice of the aftercare provider and benefits of pre-planning for families.
Before EUTHABAG, there were no functional alternatives to plastic bags.
Pet owners care about how their pet’s body will be handled after they pass.
Veterinarians now have a professional and practical solution for the transportation, cremation and burial of deceased pets that is, most importantly, respectful for the animal and their caregiver.
A survey of 100 pet owners in the US showed that:
- 70% are not aware of the plastic bag used for deceased pets
- 82% would pay the EUTHABAG average cost or more
EUTHABAG was created by Dr. Céline Leheurteux, in practice since 1999.
It is patented in Canada and the U.S., and has a design patent in Canada, U.S. and Europe.
What is EUTHABAG used for?
Euthabag has been designed as a more respectful alternative to replace the plastic garbage bags currently being used to transport, cremate or bury beloved companions after euthanasia.
Can EUTHABAG be cremated or buried?
Yes. The cover contains no heavy metals or chemical components that can contaminate the soil. It is for this reason that the recycled material we use is post-consumer and not industrial.
It is also important to know that The AVMA 2020 Euthanasia Guidelines are very clear on the veterinarian’s liability on animal burying:
“Serious repercussions may occur when veterinary health professionals who should be well informed about the necessity for proper disposal of animal remains, fail to provide it, or fail to inform their clients how to provide it. Cases of suspected wildlife death from animal remains containing pentobarbital are investigated by the regional US Fish and Wildlife Service law enforcement office. Animal remains containing pentobarbital are potentially poisonous for scavenging wildlife, including birds of prey, carnivorous mammals, and domestic dogs. Federal laws protecting many of these species apply to secondary poisoning from animal remains containing pentobarbital and may carry civil and criminal penalties, with fines up to $500,000 and incarceration for up to 2 years.”
Can EUTHABAG be used for Aquamation (alkaline hydrolysis)?
Euthabag will remain intact after Aquamation. It is used for transportation to the facility.
After Aquamation the bag can be washed and recycled.
Is EUTHABAG biodegradable?
Most animals will be cremated and not buried.
Here is why:
- A deceased animals skeleton may persist for decades or more and should be contained as it can be a health threat to scavenging and wild animals. Some jurisdictions prohibit burial altogether or require burial in a non-biodegradable bag.
- Pet remains can be accidentally dug up by unsuspecting individuals or animals. It is important that remains are contained to avoid these situations.
- Some families exhume their pet’s body when they move. It’s easier and more aesthetic if contained. The remains can be safely cremated in a EUTHABAG*.
*Blankets are commonly used, but they are non-biodegradable and can alter the remains
Our primary concern for the environment is that the bag contains no heavy metals or chemicals that can contaminate the soil. It is for this reason that the material we use is post-consumer recycled material (PCRM) and not industrial-recycles material, which can contain contaminants.
More plastic is available on the market than what we can use. We believe EUTHABAG is a good way to reuse this plastic that is already in our environment.
It is important to note that several animal burial products on the market have claimed to be comprised of ‘Biodegradable matter’, which is often comprised of transgenic corn starch and unfortunately, deals extensively with pesticides. Additionally, these fabrics will not be as tough/resistant as those used for EUTHABAG.
The AVMA 2020 Euthanasia Guidelines are very clear on the veterinarian’s liability on animal burying:
“Serious repercussions may occur when veterinary health professionals who should be well informed about the necessity for proper disposal of animal remains, fail to provide it or fail to inform their clients how to provide it. Cases of suspected wildlife death from animal remains containing pentobarbital are investigated by the regional US Fish and Wildlife Service law enforcement office. Animal remains containing pentobarbital are potentially poisonous for scavenging wildlife, including birds of prey, carnivorous mammals, and domestic dogs. Federal laws protecting many of these species apply to secondary poisoning from animal remains to contain pentobarbital and may carry civil and criminal penalties, with fines up to $500,000 and incarceration for up to 2 years.”
In 2016, ongoing biodegradability studies in tropical and temperate environments were started for EUTHABAG. Findings after 8 months revealed that the animals’ skeleton was dry and totally devoid of flesh. It was also discovered that necrophagous insects had pierced the EUTHABAG in 6 places to carry out their work.
In the temperate climate of Quebec, the bodies of 2 cats were buried in EUTHABAG in the summer of 2016.
In the fall of 2018, the bodies were exhumed and found totally devoid of flesh but not totally dry. The skeleton and part of the skin were present. One bag was intact and the other one had 2 holes probably made by necrophagous insects. Different factors come in play on the way a body will decompose:
- The body sore
- The health condition
- The nature of the soil
- The climate
- The humidity
Families who want to bury their pet should be informed that:
The bag won’t biodegrade in the short to medium term as it is made of polymer. It is primarily designed for transportation of the body to his final destination whether cremation or burial
The family can decide to bury his pet in the EUTHABAG or not depending on their belief, priority, and local legislation (ex: Florida requires a leakproof bag for burial)
If EUTHABAG is used for burial, the zipper enclosure can be left open by one inch to facilitate access to necrophagous insects and the exit of humidity.
Is EUTHABAG ecological?
Since the vast majority of EUTHABAGs will end their lives in incineration, it was imperative that they didn’t contain PVC or chlorinated compounds nor produce dioxins or furans at incineration.
EUTHABAG is made of 100% polypropylene (PP) nonwoven fabric made with post-consumer recycled material* laminated with a polymer to be leakproof, a resin zipper enclosure and resin rosin glue.
Compared to the plastic bags used currently, EUTHABAG is more ecological because it is made of recycled material versus virgin raw oil for most commonly used plastic bags. Garbage bags are made of PE. Compared to PE, PP produces less solid waste when cremated or buried but both of them produce carbon dioxyde and carbon monoxyde.
PP can be recycled endlessly.
The glue used in EUTHABAG is made from up to 50% of resin Rosine (a vegetal) and 50% polymer resin (styrene butadiene), which is considered a synthetic rubber. This mixture forms a powerful adhesive free of volatile organic compounds.
The white screen printing ink used is water-based.
*post-consumer recycled materials (PCRM) used in EUTHABAG contains no heavy metals, unlike that of industrial-recycled material. The proportion of PCRM in EUTHABAG varies between 10 and 40% depending on the size: the higher the percentage of PCRM, the more fragile the fabric becomes. Our long-term goal at EUTHABAG is to find a solution where we can increase this proportion of recycled material while maintaining the products strength.
Can EUTHABAG be re-used?
Technically, yes. However, they were designed for one-time use. EUTHABAG was designed to be practical, to avoid the extra logistics of having to wash and dry a bag and is composed of recycled material to reduce the impact on the environment. Pet owners might also have a negative perception of their animal placed in a reused body bag.
What packaging does EUTHABAG come in?
Each size (except XS which comes in a plastic package) comes in a compact & stackable box, with a perforated opening for easy removal.
- Size Small 20 units (33cm x 25cm x 18cm) (13″ x 10″ x 7″)
- Size Medium 8 units (39cm x 25cm x 15cm) (15″ x 10″ x 6″)
- Size Large 8 units (39cm x 25cm x 19cm) (15″ x 10″ x 7.5″)
- Size Extra Large 5 units (36cm x 29cm x 18cm) (14″ x 11.5″ x 7″)
Contact us for pricing and more details, or download our brochure.