Updated: Jan 30, 2022
According to the Found Animals Foundation, 1 in 3 pets will get lost at some point in their lifetime and 90% of them never return home without an ID or microchip. Another study reported that approximately 10 million pets get lost every year. Pet ID tags and microchips ensure that if your pet does get lost, it's easy for the person who finds them to get in contact with you and get your pet home safe.
They might be low tech, but a collar and ID tag are your first line of defense against losing your dog. They are the universal symbol that your dog has a home and family. The person who finds your dog might not even be aware of the other forms of ID like microchips for dogs or tattoos. Therefore, your dog should always be wearing a collar with ID whenever it’s safe to do so. Space on an ID tag is usually limited to 2-4 lines of text, so choose your information carefully. For example, if your dog has a serious health condition, that might be more important to include than your dog’s name.
Some key items to consider including are:
Your dog’s name.
Your phone number/s with area code.
Medical and/or behavioral issues.
Alternative phone number such as your veterinarian or pet sitter.
If you find a stray please take the following action even if the dog's conditions are not good as you do not know how long the dog has been missing for.
1. have the dog scanned for a chip which any vet or shelter can do at no cost
2. report the dog as found to local animal control and shelter and make sure to leave your name and number so you can be contacted (for towns with no animal control report to your local police)
3. check Craigslist "lost and found" section
4. post on Facebook “lost and found” page for your city/state
5. share with your local rescue should they be aware of a missing dog
If your dog goes missing please take the following action
1. call your microchip company and validate that the phone numbers on the registration are correct
2. report the dog as MISSING to local animal control and shelter and make sure to leave your name and number so you can be contacted (for towns with no animal control report to your local police)
3. create a post on Craigslist "lost and found" section. include photo and phone number
4. create a post on Facebook “lost and found” page for your city/state. Include photo and phone number
5. share with your local rescue
A microchip is about the size of a grain of rice. The microchip is implanted between the dog's shoulder blades under the skin by a veterinarian. The microchip can be detected with a scanner that all rescue groups, shelters and vet clinics have that reads the chip. This device then displays a unique alphanumeric code that is associated to your contact information. You or your vet need to make sure the microchip is registered. Microchip Registrations DO NOT EXPIRE.