Up to 10 million dogs disappear from their human homes each year, according to the American Humane Association. At least 33% will get lost once.
As a fur parent, you need to understand that not everyone will be a Good Samaritan, who will look for you or even bring the dog or cat to the vet or animal shelter. To decrease the chances of losing your beloved furry friend, remember these pointers:
1. Microchip Your Pet
Pet microchipping means embedding a small identification device under the skin of the animal. The best area is usually between the shoulder blades near the neck. It might sound painful, but in reality, it isn’t. It is tiny, about the size of the grain, and the process takes only a few minutes.
The microchip contains information of a registry, which then holds your personal details, such as full name and number. If your pet wanders and someone picks it up, the animal control, vet clinic, or animal shelter can scan for a microchip. They can then call the registry, which will then contact you.
Note, though, that pet microchipping isn’t mandatory in many states. Not all facilities will also have the means to scan for one. You might have to secure your pet or property further to avoid losing them.
2. Install the Right Fence
Having a fence doesn’t guarantee you’ll not lose your pet. Remember, many dog breeds can jump high. You need the right one installed on your property. One option is aluminum panel fencing, which you can install yourself.
These fence panels can vary in widths and sizes of the bars. If your cat is the great Houdini, then you need those with fewer spaces in between. Otherwise, your well-loved feline can squeeze themselves through. If you have a dog, aim for a fence that’s at least seven feet high. Agile ones can jump up to six feet!
Don’t worry if you feel that your pet loses a sense of the outside world. These fences can still leave enough gaps for easy peeking.
3. Spay or Neuter the Cat or Dog
Is spaying or neutering mandatory? No, it’s not, and some fur parents might skip this because of costs and concern about pet surgery. However, the benefits usually outweigh the costs. One is positive behavioral changes:
- They avoid roaming or wandering, looking for mates when they’re in heat.
- They are less likely to get involved in cat or dog fights since they can be less aggressive.
- Spayed and neutered dogs and cats might also no longer mark their territories with urine or poop.
4. Don’t Forget the Leash
A leash allows you to keep an eye on your pet when you’re out of the house. Some states also make it mandatory or highly encourage having restraint or control. It also prevents pets from potentially harming other animals or strangers.
In the market, you’ll find many designs for dog leashes. Find one that best fits your pets, budget, and preference. You can then connect this to a collar or a harness.
A lost pet is painful not only for you but also for your furry friend. Avoid losing each other by following these pointers.