Preventing and Finding Missing Pets
As pet owners, our number one priority is ensuring that our furry friends are safe and secure. Always take necessary precautions to prevent your family members from becoming missing pets. April 23rd marks National Lost Dog Awareness Day, and it’s a perfect opportunity to remind ourselves of the importance of microchipping our pets and ensuring their tags are up to date. There are plenty of preventative measures we can put in place to protect our pets and give ourselves peace of mind, and we’d like to explore a few ways to prevent and find missing pets.
How to Protect Your Pet from Getting Lost
Losing a pet can be a traumatic experience for both you and them. Whether they are a dog, cat, bird, or any other type of animal, losing them can be a heart-wrenching experience. Fortunately, there are many steps you can take to prevent losing your pet.
Microchip Your Pet
One of the most effective ways to prevent losing your pet is to microchip them. A microchip is a small device that is implanted under your pet’s skin, usually between the shoulder blades. The microchip contains a unique identification number that is linked to your contact information. If your pets are lost, a veterinarian or animal shelter can scan the microchip and contact you to reunite you with your missing pets. As a reminder, we offer microchip implants at Longwood Vet Center, so if your pet needs one, please schedule an appointment!
Keep Identification Tags On Your Pet
In addition to having your pet microchipped, it’s also important to keep identification tags on their collar. Make sure the tags have your current contact information, including your phone number and address. This way, if your pet is found by someone who might not think to take the animal to a vet or animal shelter, that person can contact you directly.
Train Your Pet To Come When Called
Not just dogs, but cats too! Training them to come when called can be a lifesaver if they ever get loose. Start by teaching your pet their name and a command to come to you. Use treats or toys to reinforce the behavior and practice regularly. This way, if your pet ever gets loose, you can call them back to you before they get too far.
Keep Your Pet on a Leash or in a Fenced Area
When outside, it’s important to keep your pet on a leash or in a fenced area to prevent them from running off. Even well-behaved pets can get distracted and chase after something or be frightened by a sudden loud noise and feel the need to flee. If you’re in a fenced area, make sure the fence is secure and there are no holes or gaps that your pet could escape through.
Keep A Current Photo Of Your Pet
As cute as their puppy photos are, having a current photo of your pet can be helpful if they ever get lost. Make sure the photo is clear and shows your pet’s face and any unique markings. This way, you can easily share the photo with others and post it on social media to help find your pet.
Be Vigilant And Aware Of Your Pet’s Surroundings
Finally, it’s important to be vigilant and aware of your pet’s surroundings. Keep an eye on them when outside and watch for any signs of distress or anxiety. If your pet seems nervous or uncomfortable, it’s important to address the situation immediately to prevent them from emotionally escalating.
How to Find a Lost Pet
It’s important to act quickly and efficiently if your pet gets lost to increase the chances of finding them and bringing them back home safely. Here are some steps you can take to find missing pets:
Search Your Home and Neighborhood
The first step when you realize your pet is lost is to search your home and the surrounding area. Look in all the rooms of your home, as well as any hiding spots or areas that your pet might be drawn to. Call out your pet’s name and listen for any signs of movement or noise. If you have a dog that has escaped from the yard, make sure to check the perimeter of your property.
Spread The Word
Let your neighbors and local businesses know that your pet is lost. Put up posters and flyers around your neighborhood, including that clear photo of your pet we mention and your contact information. You can also post on social media and online classifieds, such as your town’s Reddit page or on your community’s Facebook page.
Contact Animal Shelters and Rescues
Call your local veterinarians, animal shelters, and rescue organizations to report missing pets. Provide a description of your pet, including their breed, age, and any distinguishing features. Ask if they have any recent arrivals that match your pet’s description, and provide them with your contact information should your pet be dropped off.
Use Online Resources
There are a number of online resources available to help locate missing pets. Websites like The Center for Lost Pets, Pet FBI, Lost Dogs of America, Fido Finder, and NextDoor allow you to create lost pet listings and search in your area. You can also use social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to spread the word about your missing pets.
LVC is Happy to Help Prevent and Find Missing Pets
April 23rd, National Lost Dog Awareness Day, brings attention to the thousands of dogs that go missing each year and the importance of keeping our pets close by our side. Taking simple steps such as ensuring that our pets are microchipped, wearing proper identification tags, and keeping a watchful eye on them can make all the difference in preventing our beloved pets from getting lost. Let’s use this day as a reminder to take the necessary precautions to protect our pets, and please let us know at Longwood Vet Center if there is any way we can assist you in doing so.