Did you know that one out of three dogs goes missing at some point in their lives? And cats, as we all know, definitely have a stubborn mindset and a drive to wander. Each time you lose your pet, even for just a few minutes, the odds of an accident or permanent loss increase. These six tips can help you keep your pet safe where they belong: With you!
Spay or neuter. The drive to mate is one of the primary reasons that pets wander from home. Spaying or neutering your pet will eliminate this urge, and they’ll be less likely to seek opportunities to stray.
Get the right gear. Pets can slip out of collars and sometimes a harness. If you have a pet that pulls a lot on their walks, we recommend use of a gentle leader or Martindale collar. Retractable leashes are not ideal for walking since they can break easily and allows pets to be walking in front of their owners. This does not allow control of your pet in an unexpected situation. Pets when walked should be on either a 4 or 6 foot leash. No matter what you choose, make sure your pet is secure.
Build or repair a fence. Fencing your yard will give Fido a place to play outdoors but supervise carefully until you’re sure that it’s secure. Dogs can be particularly talented at finding weak spots or ways to climb over a fence, and they will often dig underneath it. Regularly inspect your fencing and make the necessary repairs to keep it strong.
Utilize situational awareness. Pets often take off when they’re stressed or you’re distracted, or both. Secure your pet during house parties, during Fourth of July fireworks, or when you welcome house guests.
Train your pet. A dog who has learned basic commands such as “sit” and “stay” is less likely to take off unexpectedly. And of course, both dogs and cats should learn to respond to their name when you call.
Microchip your pet. Tags can get lost when pets slip out of collars, but a microchip is permanent. In the event that your pet does wander from home, the chip will greatly improve their odds of being found and returned to you.