Preventing Lost Pets: How to Keep Your Dog Safe

Every year, thousands of pets go missing. This can be a pet owner’s worst nightmare, as dogs and cats often become a beloved part of the family. Being proactive about keeping your dog safe can reduce the risk that they might accidentally go missing and increase the chances of finding them if they do.

Here are just a few things that you can do to enhance your dog’s safety:

1. Keep your dog’s collar on.

It can be tempting to leave your dog’s collar off when they are inside, but they can slip out of an open door in the blink of an eye. Regularly check to make sure your dog’s collar fits properly – not too snug or too loose – as different factors such as growing, gaining or losing weight, or getting a haircut can all affect fit. Attach ID tags with at least your dog’s name and a phone number. You can also get tags that include your name or address as well. If your dog is licensed, that tag should also be on their collar.

2. Get your dog microchipped.

Another layer of protection is getting your dog microchipped. A tiny chip is inserted under the skin on the back of their neck (don’t worry – it doesn’t hurt them!) and is linked to an online profile. There you can include all of your contact information. If your dog should become lost, many veterinary clinics, shelters, or animal control agencies have technology to scan for a microchip and can reunite you with your dog. Don’t forget to update your contact information if you move or change phone numbers.

3. Keep your dog leashed.

Whenever you take your dog outside, even if it’s for a quick trip to the mailbox or to get in the car, put them on a leash. If anything should spook them or catch their attention, you have control, and it’s harder for them to run off. Even when letting them out into your backyard to go to the bathroom, it can be beneficial to have them leashed, especially if your yard is not fenced in.

4. Check your fence.

Periodically inspect your fence. Look for loose boards or chain links. Check for spots where your dog (or another animal) may have been digging underneath the fence and they could eventually slip out. Make sure that the gate closes securely every time and there are no issues with the lock catching.

5. Spay or neuter your pet.

Not only does this prevent unwanted breeding, but it can reduce your dog’s desire to chase after other non-spayed or neutered animals.

6. Train your dog.

Obedience training can improve your relationship with your dog and keep them safer. Even knowing basic commands such as sit, stay, and come can help. You want your dog to listen to and respect you. If they’re well-trained, they are more likely to obey and not wander off.

7. Supervise your dog.

Never leave your dog alone, whether in your backyard or your car. Not only can this help prevent them from escaping through a hole under the fence or when a car door is opened, but it can also deter people from trying to steal them.

Don’t leave your dog alone while you’re away for long periods of time (such as on vacation), either. They may not be as familiar with or as well behaved for someone else watching them in your home. Board your dog at Lake Wylie Pet Resort so you know they are safe and secure while you are gone, and you can enjoy your time away. Contact us today to schedule their stay.

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