1. Update your pet’s microchip and tag information.
If your furry BFF isn’t microchipped yet, please get on that ASAP. According to statistically sound research, the return-to-owner rate for cats was 20 times higher and for dogs 2.5 times higher for microchipped pets than were the rates of return for all stray cats and dogs that had entered a shelter.
If you’re nervous that a microchip just isn’t within your budget, we recommend checking out this article by FoundAnimals on how to dig up free or low-cost microchipping opportunities in your area.
Already have a microchip, but aren’t sure how to update the info? Just go to Free Pet Chip Registry.
Don’t know your animal’s microchip number? Ask your vet to scan the chip and give you the number during your next visit. You may also be able to get it scanned by your local shelter for free.
Always keep a no-slip collar on your animal with an up-to-date ID tag. Go to your favorite pet supply store for a new tag. If you’re feeling extra fancy, want to notify others of your animal’s allergies or medical needs, or just have a really long address, try a QR code ID tag.
2. Keep your cats indoors or create a catio to keep cats safe at home.
Creating a ‘catio‘ can satisfy your animal’s desire to be outdoors in a safe environment. Learn more at Multnomah County Animal Services‘ ‘Cats Safe at Home‘ page and get inspired with these catio pins.
Remember: even “indoor only” cats need to have proper identification!
3. Check your fence.
Regularly check your fence perimeter for holes or weaknesses. Our buddies are crafty escape artists when they want to be!
Don’t leave dogs unattended outside when not at home. Or, really, when you are home, too.
Absolutely never leave dogs tethered for extended periods of time, whether you are home or not. It is also prohibited (AKA illegal) in many cities across the country.
4. Practice life-saving commands.
Train and practice recall (“Come!”) commands with dogs before ever going off-leash. Teaching and mastering basic commands like come, stay, and sit with your dog can be the difference between life and death in emergency situations.
5. Check your window and door screens.
Window screens and screen doors won’t stop dogs and cats who want to get outside. Keep windows closed to at least a narrow space where pets can’t fit through them, or install additional protection. This is especially important when leaving your animal unattended.
Special thanks to Jennifer Sparkman and Jay LeVitre from Multnomah County Animal Services for sharing their expert opinion on how to keep our furry loved ones safe.
Written by Aascot Bohlander, Content & Email Marketing Manager of Core Paws