This week is National Pet ID week, so this is a great time to make sure your pet has the proper identification. If your dog has ever run away, your heart begins to pound as you wonder if you can find him or if he can find his way home. Hopefully he has a collar with your name, address and telephone number. However, 33% of pet owners admit that their dog does not have current identification. If you move, you have to remember to update your information!
Another problem is that tags can wear out and become hard to read. In addition to tags, you might consider microchipping. This method is much safer and is more permanent. A microchip is a very small electronic device that is encoded with an identification number unique to your pet.
Having a microchip put in your dog is a lot like a vaccination. Some of the loose skin between the shoulder blades is gently pulled up and the needle is quickly inserted, injecting the microchip into the tissue. Once the chip is inserted, the pet is scanned to ensure that the chip is reading properly. In fact, many pet owners microchip their dog at the same time they are spayed or neutered. Once you have microchipped your pet, your veterinarian will tell you the appropriate agency to register him. The procedure is virtually painless.
Most, if not all humane societies/shelters and animal rescues, such as To Love a Canine Rescue, now have microchip readers and these organizations routinely scan all stray and injured animals. The ID number is then passed along to the appropriate agency, which arranges for your pet to be returned to you.
In additional to microchipping, there are other organizations that you can register your dog. Finding Rover’s goal is to get lost dogs back to their homes. If you see a lost dog, take a photo and Finding Rover’s facial recognition technology will find the owner. Download the free app to protect your best friend at www.findingrover.com.
WaggTagg™ is the new way to help find your dog if he goes missing with an easily visible, simple solution for reuniting lost pets with owners. When someone finds your dog, they will either scan the unique QR code on the WaggTagg or enter the WaggTagg ID on the website. The person that found your dog is then able to contact you. The WaggTagg was named by Iheartdogs as one of the 20 coolest pet identification tags.
If your dog becomes lost, here are some tips to help you locate him:
- Social media – post on Facebook – your personal page, plus there are Facebook pages specifically for lost dogs. Twitter and Instagram as well.
- Contact your local police department, SPCA and Humane Society. If your dog was adopted through a rescue, contact them as well.
- Put up posters in your neighborhood with a photo of your dog, his name and your contact information.
- Contact the microchip company. They may be able to post your pet in a lost pet recovery network.
- Place an ad in your local paper. Plus check the paper for “Dogs Found”
- Report your dog missing via “Lost My Doggie“
You can find tips on what information you should include when creating a lost dog notice/flyer or post on social media in the “Reporting Missing/Found Pets” section of the To Love a Canine Rescue website under “Tips & Resources.”
Jeri Wagner is a canine behavioral therapist and master trainer. Jeri uses a natural training system leveraging the same communication methods – body language and voice control – that dogs follow as part of their instinctive pack mentality. Training takes place in the home where the problems generally occur. Jeri trains in western Montgomery County, northern Chester County and eastern Berks County. For more information, call 1-877-500 BARK (2275) or visit www.barkbusters.com.
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