Disclosure: This post is sponsored by PetHub and I have been compensated for my participation. Daily Dog Tag only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers. All opinions are my own.
In 2014 PetHub established July as Lost Pet Prevention Month. Losing a pet is scary for both the humans and often the pets. Sadly many lost pets never make it back home.
Here are a few of our strategies to prevent our dogs from getting lost.
Have A Routine When Visitors Arrive
With 3 small dogs, it is hard to keep track of all of them all of the time. Once we added Theo to the family, we instituted a new routine. When someone rings the doorbell, all the dogs go in their crates before we open the door. At first, I was reluctant to keep my guests waiting, but our dogs’ safety is really important to us.
Other people teach their dog to lie on a mat or bed. Having a safe spot will cut down on chaos when someone is at the door and minimize the risk of a dog getting lost.
When my sister’s dog Lulu was a puppy, she was staying with friends for a weekend. They had a party and Lulu slipped out unnoticed as guests entered the house.
Fortunately, a woman at a nearby bus stop noticed that Lulu was hanging around the front yard and rang the doorbell. She could have easily been stolen or hit by a car.
My mom and my sister both have strong, secure chain link fences, but they aren’t a good choice for Nelly. She is small enough that she can squeeze through the gap between the gate and the fence post. Nelly is always supervised if she is in either of their backyards.
Fences can develop weak spots over time, check them regularly to make sure your dog can’t get out. If your dogs love to dig, be on the lookout for holes under the fence. Dogs can squeeze under the fence if the ground is uneven.
I dislike invisible fences for a number of reasons. First of all, I don’t like aversive training. Secondly, invisible fences don’t protect against a thief, stray dog, or wildlife. If the power goes out, an invisible fence may no longer work. Lastly, sometimes the temptation is just too great and a dog will risk the shock to greet someone or chase something. If that happens, a dog can easily get lost. Our neighbor relied on his invisible fence for his Boston Terrier. Unfortunately, he put the dog out during fireworks and the poor little guy ran off. He never made his way back home.
Teach and Practice A Strong Recall
This is something I am still working on with my dogs. Jen Gabbard from Puppy Leaks offers these 13 Simple Steps to Improve Your Dog’s Recall. I’ve had dogs all of my life, and I think everyone should read this post: Loose Dog? Don’t Chase! Throughout the years we’ve had the opportunity to try most of them with good success. When I was ten, our Yorkie slipped out of her collar at the vet’s office and ran away, towards a busy road. I grabbed her leash, held it up and yelled, “Polly, do you want to go for a walk?” Luckily she did!
Microchip and Tag Your Dog
Despite all the precautions, sometimes a dog is lost. The simplest way to reunite a lost dog with his family can be a tag with information to get him home again. PetHub ID has a lot of style options as well a collar with ID information right on it.
If someone finds your dog they can contact PetHub and help get your pet back home! They have a 24 hour “Found Pet Hotline” so if someone finds your pet, they will talk to someone who can help in reunite you and your dog. The premium subscription also notifies you if someone scans the tag as well as alerts shelters in the area that your pet is missing!
Microchips are an important part of keeping your dog safe. Make sure it is registered and keep your contact information up to date!
We’ve partnered with PetHub to create a terrific giveaway. One person will win $50 worth of PetHub merchandise (collar and/or tags) and two more people will receive $25 worth of PetHub merchandise. Open to US residents over 18 years of age.