We received a "lost dog" flier here at the Fort. If any of you have seen him, make sure to give them a call.
Nothing is worse than that feeling in the pit of your stomach when you realize that your pooch isn't where he or she is supposed to be. Losing a pet is a harrowing experience, but there are a number of things that you can do to avoid losing Fido in the first place, and to ensure that your lost pet has the best possible chance at being returned home to you.
One of the no-brainers is to make sure that your pet is always contained. Whether that means they are on a leash or tie-out, in a fully fenced yard or closed house, make sure that you are aware of the environment that you are leaving your pet in. If Fido has separation anxiety related behaviors (such as digging out under the fence, tearing at or opening doors) then consider leaving your pet in a crate when you have to leave him or her at home. I personally am a big proponent of crating--I would much rather have Gordon confined to his nap zone than allow him to have full-run of the house (and all the "edible" things he can find in there!).
You should also make certain that you have clear, high-quality, recent pictures of your pet, in case you have to make fliers.
Microchips are also a really great invention that we should all take advantage of. While collars and tags are the first line of defense, these can easily be lost or broken. A microchip will be with Fido, no matter how long he's on the lam, and as soon as he gets to a vet or rescue group he should be scanned.
Make use of every resource that is available to you! Take fliers to vets, rescue groups, pet stores, and yes doggie daycares! These are places that your pet may turn up, and places where tons of animal lovers get together and talk on a daily basis. They are great places to start getting the word out. You can also post fliers digitally on social media like Facebook and Twitter. It may seem like it won't help, but those services reach a wide audience of people, who can all continue to pass on the information to everyone that they know. Before you know it, you may be hearing back from someone who has seen your pet.
When it's not your pup that has been lost, do your part to help when you can. It just takes a minute to snap a picture of the "lost dog" flier with a smartphone, and post it to Facebook and Twitter. Or even just to save the number, in case you stumble across the pup yourself.
If you are interested in learning more about tracking down lost pets, consider checking out the free seminar on May 17th offered by the Missing Pet Partnership. This seminar will explain lost pet recovery techniques that the Pet Partnership uses. They are also offering a more in-depth, 5-day seminar in late June.
Everyone enjoy your weekend!
P.S.--Make sure that you take a chance to look at tonight's "supermoon," the biggest of 2012
P.P.S.--Here's a quick update on that Diamond Pet Foods recall