Lost Dog? How to Avoid This Increasing Problem


A lost dog is always a traumatic experience for a caring dog owner. Usually, when a distraught owner phones an animal shelter to find out if their dog might be there, the first question is: “Has your dog got an ID tag.

Each year in the United States, animal shelters will process around ten million dogs. In the U.S there are approximately sixty million dogs. That means that one dog in six is going to find itself going through the doors of a shelter. Sadly, seventeen out of every one hundred dogs will never see their owner again.

However, there are tools that can help to alleviate this problem:

Almost 5 years after she vanished from her garden in Birmingham, UK, a beagle called Droopy was reunited with her owner Stuart Stanford. And it was all down to a tiny microchip Stuart had inserted in Droopy while she was still a puppy.

Droopy was found wandering the streets of Birmingham and was taken to the local RSPCA animal shelter. A completely surprised Stuart said, “When the RSPCA phoned to tell us that she had been found it came as a real shock. We’ve got no idea where she’s been for the past five years. I just wish she could talk and let us know”.

Suzanne Murphy, the RSPCA veterinary nurse who phoned Stuart said, “we frequently have reunions, but we’ve never had one after such a long time. We didn’t think that she would recognize her old owners, but unbelievably, she definitely did. ” Suzanne also added. “This happy reunion showed how important it is for pet owners to get their dog micro-chipped.”

Microchipping is a simple process. All that is involved in the insertion of a glass tube, beneath the loose skin between the shoulder blades. It measures about the size of a grain of rice. It’s similar to being vaccinated. A handheld device scans the dog; the dogs’ data is read and then checked against a database. A phone call is all that is needed to notify a very happy owner.

Having your dog tattooed is another option. They’re permanent and are usually done on the inside of the ear, or on the inside of the leg. Your vet will be able to guide you on either of these tools and also recommend a proven specialist.

Here are some lost dog tips:

1. If you’ve got a cell phone use that on the tag-it’s much more immediate.
2. Put your dog’s name on the tag. And also your surname.
3. If you do lose your dog, take immediate action, don’t hesitate.
4. First off, phone your local animal shelter to get the ball rolling.
5. There are some local radio stations that’ll give airtime to people who are looking for lost pets. Find out if yours does?
6. Your local newspaper may have a lost and found section. Check this out.
7. Nail up plenty of flyers around the neighborhood. Include a photo of your dog. This always brings a good response.
8. Offer a small reward. This is a good motivator.

An ID tag attached to a dog’s collar is the easiest way to increase the chances of recovering a lost dog. It’s visible, and everyone recognizes what it is. They are as cheap, or as expensive as you want them to be. If you haven’t already got one for your dog; then why don’t you do yourself and your dog a big favor and get one?