Steps to Prevent the Loss of Your Four-legged Friend
- Always have an identification tag on your animal, including a current license. Also, be sure that you are able to identify his/her collar.
- Get your animal microchipped. Cats, dogs and rabbits can be microchipped. It is a painless process where a chip the size of a grain of rice is inserted between the shoulders just under the skin. When your animal is found, this may be used to quickly identify and contact you if the animal has been taken to a place with a microchip scanner.
- Always keep your animal indoors unless on a leash or harness.
- Transport your cat in a carrier and your dog only when leashed.
- Always have updated photos of your animal. Be sure that you note unique markings or characteristics, such as scars.
- Never allow your animal to be unattended while on a leash outdoors.
- If you have a fenced in yard and your animal is outside unsupervised, ensure that it is animal proofed. Check the fence for any gaps, holes or openings. Even if it seems small, he can wriggle through tiny places! Also make sure there are no objects to climb on to jump over the fence.
- Teach your dog to come when called.
- Sign up for a manners class to bond with your dog in a positive way. A strong bond and good training will help to keep your dog with you in a potentially dangerous situation.
- Make sure that your companion is up to date on his/her vaccinations. Animals running at large or staying at the shelter are at higher risks of being exposed to diseases. See your veterinarian about recommended vaccines.
- Create a L.O.S.T. kit in case your animal should ever get away from you. This kit should include items like an animal photo and description, flashlight, pre-made flyers, phone numbers of animal control, police, the vet, favorite items to place outside and delicious canned food.
- Keep a duplicate of the L.O.S.T. kit in an easy to find spot or give it to whomever is caring for your nimal in their home or kennel. When you are on vacation or hire an animal sitter, they will have all of this information ready if your animal is lost while in their care. Click here to download a pdf form that you can fill out for these situations.
if you have lost your animal, contact your local animal control agency (see above information) immediately.