The Forth of July is approaching fast. Those of you with pets will know this can be scary for pets. Did you know that on the July 4 holiday more pets are lost than any other day of the year? Yep, loud fireworks and guns can scare a pet so badly that they will do anything to get away from the noise.
My friend’s dog was not scared of fireworks and was off leash at a celebration. As they lit some cones, the dog picked them up showering us in sparks. The cones burned the dog and the handler, as well as a few others trying to help. It is best to leave your best friend home. If you plan on leaving to attend an event, keep pets locked up indoors. This will ensure your pet is safe. If you have to bring your pet make sure you have them on a leash at all times. Please keep them far away from fireworks.
What you should do if your pet gets lost? Act immediately and start a search. First off check the neighborhood or area the pet was last seen. Making flyers and handing them out to the area residents could help bring your pet home faster. Also contact shelters, rescues and vets as well as people you come in contact with along the way. Have flyers with detailed information on your pet, and don’t forget your phone number so they can contact you. Post lost dog to Web sources. Even the paper boy, garbage man or mail carrier may have seen fido on the run. It is best to not give up checking the shelter daily; posting lost ads may lead to a sighting or even your pet. Also newspapers have lost and found columns you can check or place an ad.
If you offer a reward, never put down an amount. Some people take advantage of reward offers and could try to hold your pet hostage till you pay them. This is illegal and they can be arrested.
Keeping your pet safe while at large is impossible, but making sure your pet has tags with your phone number and pets name is the key to getting them returned. Keep a current color photo of your pet with their shot records for easy access. You should have a list of any special markings, coat type, scars, eye color, whether ears are up or down and anything you can use on the flyer.
Did you know only one out of five dogs that end up in animal control get reunited with their families? So many dogs could be picked up by a stranger and never be returned. I also recommend micro chipping as this is a permanent tag that can not be lost. However there is no guarantee your dog will ever get scanned or show up in a shelter. Your safest bet is to have tags on a collar as well as the chip. If your pet is turned in or found by a rescuer, the shelter or vet can scan them for the chip for your contact info.
Today our neighbor’s two Chihuahuas were on the run on our block. My hubby had to chase them down — luckily I knew who they belonged to. I gave them a call and learned they were out of town and the dog sitter was watching them. The dogs got away and were playing in traffic. Bigwoods to the rescue — we got them and put them back in the yard. Sadly this happens quite often. Dogs are social animals and want to be with the pack. The family is the pack and will escape to try to find them.
Pets dart out the front door in a flash, dig a hole under the fence, squeeze though a loose board and even run off while out on a walk. It is better to have some way for them to find their way back home. A collar with name tags is the first defense; a chip is second.
But the ultimate way to keep them home is training. To ensure their future safety, train your pet with boundaries and the beside you command. This means work for not just you, but the entire family. Everyone has to learn how to keep a pet safe at home or out on walks. Escapes happen. Let’s just make sure you can try to avoid it and be prepared just in case your dog goes on the run.