Ask anyone who has lost their best friend and most will look back on the experience wondering if they should have or could have done more to assure it didn’t happen. Whether your lost pet has been returned or is still missing, you know the anguish of finding them gone and feeling helpless…that feeling of going to bed at night, wondering where they are and if they’re okay…hoping and praying that they stay safe until you find them, or someone else finds them for you. No one who loves their pet should ever go through that.
Today, right now, you can take steps to keep your pets as safe as you possibly can, so if the worst does happen, you’ll know that you have done everything possible to bring him home.
1. Microchip your pet! But that’s not enough. Make sure the chip’s contact information is ALWAYS current. When you take your pet to the vet for their annual exam, ask your vet to scan them for their microchip to make sure it hasn’t traveled and is easily found.
2. Keep a collar on your pet with a current phone number either written on the collar itself, or on a tag. Don’t use the excuse that the tag keeps falling off. Purchase an inexpensive slide-on tag which doesn’t dangle or get caught and is virtually impossible to lose.
3. NEVER leave your pet outside unattended. How many times have we heard someone say “he’d never run off” or “he always comes back”…until that day it happened. If he didn’t escape on his own, someone may have deliberately or inadvertently opened the gate and he decided to take a walk-around. If that occurs, anything can happen…roaming packs of dangerous dogs, predators, mean people, poison, vehicles…the list is endless. Leashes are not just the law…they are your dog’s best friend.
4. If you have children or visitors, impress upon them the importance of being vigilant so your pet doesn’t dart out the door.
Remember that your pet is much like a toddler: they are curious, quick, and sometimes disobedient. Treat them with the same care you’d treat a small child and you will save your family heartache and just maybe, your pet’s life.
But if the worst does happen, if you have prepared yourself and them in all the ways you can, you’ll have the best possible chance to feel that unmatchable joy of having your family reunited.
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