As the weather warms and the days get brighter, our pets spend more time outside, sometimes without our permission. More pets are reported lost in spring and summer than other times of the year. Animals without collars are especially vulnerable to becoming lost. Even those who normally wear collars with ID can lose them (or scamper off the moment you remove it to get ready for a bath.)
If only our pets could recite their address and phone number! Since they can’t, here are some tips to keep your buddy safe and sound.
- A well-fitting collar with ID tags is the easiest way to identify your pet. Most dogs and cats will adapt to a collar and there are varieties for every animal’s lifestyle. Remember, ID tags are only useful if they’re on your pet. To keep your phone number private, use a license tag.
- A microchip is permanently inserted just under the skin. It’s scan-able by shelters and vets and provides contact information to reunite you with your pet.
- Keep your pet confined when in a vehicle. A carrier or crate is the safest, but a leash/harness firmly attached to the seat will make sure she can’t escape if the door opens unexpectedly.
- Make sure your pet’s outdoor area is secure. Fences prevent accidents as well as wandering. Check our page on cat yards for ways to create safe outdoor spaces for cats, too.
- Spaying and neutering removes your pets’ tendency to roam in search of mates. It also helps reduce pet overpopulation, a serious problem in our area.
We recommend microchips as a way to permanently identify your pet. Each chip contains a unique code that can be read to identify your pet. If your animal is lost or stolen, the chip will aid greatly in returning your pet to you. Animal shelters and veterinarians have scanners that can identify your pet, and one phone call is all it takes to find out where that animal belongs. A coded tag is also provided to wear on the collar so someone without a scanner can still trace the pet’s proper home.
We implant HomeAgain brand microchips. Give us a call and we’ll come out and help make sure that if your pet gets a bit of spring fever combined with wanderlust, he’ll have a better chance of getting back home.
What To Do If Your Pet Is Lost
It’s heartbreaking, terrifying and happens even to the most conscientious caretakers. But, the faster you react, the better the chance of finding your furry friend. If Fluffy slips through the door, or Sam hops the fence, don’t wait–take action!
Go out and look, calling your pet’s name. Look under, inside and behind, especially for cats. Ask everyone you meet if they’ve seen your pet. Do this at least once a day until you’re reunited.
Make a poster, with a photo if possible. Make lots of copies and take them on your searches through the neighborhood. Give them to neighbors, ask local businesses if they will post one and attach them to posts, fences, etc. where legal. Some people who find a pet won’t post a “found” poster and assume the animal is homeless if they don’t see a “lost” notice.
Call ALL the Lost Pet Hotlines:
Bremerton Lost and Found 360–478-5366
Kitsap Humane Society 24-hour Lost Pet Recording 360–692-7137
Consolidated Pet Line 360–698-0255 OR 360–792-3382
PAWS of Bainbridge Island 206–842-2451
North Kitsap: 1–888-558-PAWS
Go to the Kitsap Humane Society and LOOK. Only you can truly identify your companion.
Call the veterinarians in your area. Some clinics will hold injured animals, hoping their owners will claim them. Most will let you post a flyer, too.
DON’T GIVE UP!!! Pets have been reunited with their families after weeks or months after getting lost.