Safeguard your pets before they are lost by following the common-sense tips below.
Pet-proof your yard fence so your dog will be safely confined. Be sure to check your fence regularly for new escape routes.
Keep fence gates securely locked. This is for the safety of both your pet and any visitors (wanted or unwanted).
Never allow your pets to roam free in the neighborhood. Leash them at all times.
Always leash your dogs when taking them anywhere. If a dog gets loose in an unfamiliar area, its chances of ever finding its way home are practically nil.
Get some good photos of your pet now, before it's too late.
· Take close-up shots so that details show up well.
· Keep taking shots until you get a few good ones that really look like your pet. Most snapshots of pets look like any other dog. You want your photos to be unique and your pet to be unmistakable.
· These photos will be invaluable to you later if your pet is ever lost.
Ensure that YOU can be located if your pet is found.
· Always keep a collar on your pet with a tag that has your CURRENT PHONE NUMBER on it.
· Always have a CURRENT pet license tag attached to your pet's collar. You can be found by the number on the tags.
· A collar and phone tag are the most important form of ID you can have for your pet. However, pets can lose their collars on the streets. For real security, a backup is needed (see the next two items).
Talk to your vet about a microchip implant. A chip provides positive and reliable identification for your pet and all modern shelters scan animals for this ID device. Find out which brand of chip is prevalent in your area and go with that one.
· Also ask your vet about pet tattoos. We don't like tattoos as well as we do microchips, but they also provide positive identification if done correctly. A tattoo is often very difficult to read because hair has grown over it and/or the lost animal is frightened and will not allow inspection. If you do use a tattoo, we feel that the best place to apply it is on the inner thigh. Pet thieves have been known to cut off a tattooed ear!
And finally, spay or neuter your pets!
· Both males and females will be much less likely to wander if they are "fixed."
· An added benefit is that they will live a longer, happier, healthier life if they are spayed or neutered.