NATIONAL PET ID WEEK
National Pet ID Week is always for seven days starting April 17. It gives pet owners an excellent opportunity to review the steps they can take to ensure their pet has the best chance of being recovered should the animal become lost.
An estimated one in three pets will go missing at some point. Data also suggests that about 5 million animals enter shelters each year. Of those shelter animals, 40 to 60 percent are lost pets. Getting those pets back home can reduce shelter crowding and free up valuable resources and kennel space for truly homeless animals.
Vets recommend every pet owner prepare for a lost pet. They say pet identification is a crucial step to keeping pets safe. Even the most well-behaved cats and dogs can get lost, runoff unexpectedly, or get separated from their owners. Two popular ways to I-D your pet are to use a microchip and a dog collar and tag. Collar tags are historically the most common. Pet owners can get personalized tags are available at pet stores or online.
Dog collars with identifying features are historic. Ancient kings, queens, and pharaohs used dog collars to show the status of dogs. Even though it is believed that dog collars with identifying features originated in Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greece gave dog collars their practical purpose. While the Egyptians used dog collars for decorative and possibly even identification purposes, Ancient Greeks used dog collars for more than identifying the dog and its owner. Farmers created spiked dog collars to protect their dogs’ throats from being ripped out by wolves.
Microchips for pets began in the mid-1990s. Global Positioning Systems were developed to become “bionics capable” of being read by satellites using Radio Frequency Identification of RFID. They could be tracked within inches of their location anywhere on the planet.
Make sure the tag has the most important piece of information:
- Your cell phone number. Inspect your pet’s collar and tags.
- Are they in good repair?
- Are the tags readable? Or scratched and worn?
- Is the contact information up to date? (Contact info should include your cell phone number and your address.)
We provide the following tips to help keep your pet safe:
- Make sure your pet always wears a collar with a current ID tag, rabies tag and city/county license (where applicable).
- Include a contact name, correct address and daytime and evening phone numbers on all ID tags.
- Keep your pet’s licenses, ID tag and microchip current – make sure to update the tag if you change your address or phone number.
- If you are traveling, put a temporary tag on your pet with the contact information of someone who knows how to reach you.
- Tag your cats even if you never let them outside. They could slip through an open door and quickly become lost in the neighborhood.
- Take the added security precaution of having your pet microchipped. Microchipping provides an additional layer of protection in the event the pet’s collar and tag fall off or are removed, and nearly all animal shelters across the country routinely scan every animal upon intake for the presence of a microchip.
HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalPetIDWeek
- Follow on Social Media #NationalPetIDWeek, #PetIdWeek
- Add identification to your pet’s collar.
- Consider getting a microchip. If your pet is already microchipped, make sure your address and phone number are up to date with the manufacturer.
- Keep the microchip brand, the 1-800 number of the company, and the microchip number of your pet in an easily accessible place.
- Keep current photos of your animals.