Lost and Found: How to Make Sure You Have the Safest Pet on the Block

We put a lot of effort into doing what is best for our pets. We put together diets, plan exercise routines, spend hours researching the best toys, always putting their safety first. However, there is one threat that is often overlooked by even the most diligent and caring pet owner – pet theft. While this may seem like a rare occurrence, pet theft is a more prevalent danger than you might think. This February 14th is Pet Theft Awareness Day, and we want to help you take the necessary precautions to ensure that your pets are safe from this frequently forgotten risk.

Why Pets Are Stolen

Pets can be stolen for a number of reasons, but the root issue usually comes down to one thing – money. Purebred and designer breeds can bring a thief thousands of dollars, or they can be sold to puppy mills for breeding. Some thieves will kidnap pets and demand a reward for their return. Stolen pets can also be used as “bait dogs” to help train fighting dogs, and are sometimes even sold to laboratories for animal testing. With so many ways for these criminals to make a quick dollar from their schemes, it’s important to keep every pet safe, whether they are a valued purebred or simply a beloved mutt.

The First Line Of Defense – Proper ID

One of the most important, and most effective ways to protect your pet from would-be thieves is to ensure they have proper identification. The easiest place to start is a physical ID tag. An effective ID tag should include your contact information and be securely fastened to your pet’s collar. One thing to avoid is putting your pet’s name on the collar, as they are likely to respond to their name and be led astray by someone with less-than-good intentions. The next step in helpful identification is a microchip ID tag. This method is permanent, and connects your pet to a massive network of vets and shelters to help bring them home safely, should they ever get away. Your pet may not have thumbs to make a call, but proper identification can help your pet get in touch with you, whether they wander off or are stolen by a pet thief.

Keeping Your Pets Safe Everyday

In addition to identification, there are several ways to keep your pets out of the harmful hands of a pet thief. Here are a few tips:

  • Lock and key – Keep your outside gates locked to keep unwanted visitors from easily getting to your pets.
  • Out of harm’s way – Keep your pets indoors, especially when you’re not at home.
  • Listen to Bob Barker – Pets that are spayed or neutered are less likely to wander away from home, and are less valuable to thieves who might sell them for breeding.
  • A watchful eye – Keep a close eye on your pet when they are outside, also watching out for any suspicious strangers, working with your neighbors to report any suspicious behavior.
  • Out of sight – Ensure your pet isn’t visible from the street, so as not to tempt any potential thieves.

 

Want help keeping your pet out of harm’s way?

If you would like to learn more about microchip identification, or additional suggestions on how to keep your pets safe and healthy, visit our friendly and knowledgeable staff today! To learn more about how Mebane Pet can assist with your pet’s well-being, call (919) 304-5200 today to schedule an appointment.