Many pet owners assume that their pet will never stray or get lost. This is especially relevant during the holiday period when many families leave their pets at home while they are on vacation.
Both cat and dogs enjoy routine and being with their human pack members. Therefore holidays can be a stressful time for them when their routine is changed and their family members are not around.
In most cases because our dogs are kept confined within the safety of our perimeter walls/fences, getting lost can be both life threatening and life changing for the animal/s involved. Cats differ from dogs in that if allowed, they roam in and around the neighbourhood and usually know their way home.
However when it comes to our pets, it is vitally important the they both wear or have some form of identification such as a ID tag, collar and/or a microchip.
The microchip is the only electronic form of permanent animal identification. It is no bigger than a grain of rice and is inserted painlessly under the skin by injection, between the shoulder blades. Each microchip contains its own unique numerical code which when read by a digital scanner is linked to your pet’s contact information.
This form of identification when used in conjunction with a collar and ID tag, is highly recommended to reduce the heartache felt when a pet goes missing.
What to do if your pet goes missing?
Regardless of whether your pet has one or more of the forms of identification mentioned above, there is still a chance that if it goes missing, it may be difficult to find and return to you. Here are some additional steps pet owners should take if their pet goes missing:
- Put up posters in your local neighbourhood with a picture of the missing pet and your contact information. Speak to neighbours, security guards and other domestic workers and ask them to keep an lookout for your pet.
- Contact nearby vets and welfare facilities regarding your missing pet and give them your pet’s details.
- In recent years social media channels, such as Facebook have become very effective in spreading word about missing pets and helping to find their owners. Be sure to post the missing poster and ask your friends to share the post.
- In the case of cats, sometimes they can roam the neighbourhood for longer than usual. Be sure to leave out items such as a t-shirt with your scent and some food to entice them back home.