Each and every day in the Living In Oakland Park Facebook Group and other social media, someone posts about their missing pet. In our article about Jamie Katz, Pet Detective, we detailed how South Floridians can contract Katz to help them find their fur babies. But if you don’t want to make that call to Katz, then check out these four tried and true tips from Detective Katz herself about how you can keep your fur babies safe.
4 Tips to Keep Your Animals Safe
#1 – Do NOT Leave Your Pets Outside Unattended
We come home from work and the first thing we do is let our pups outside to go to the bathroom. We check messages, straighten up the house, and unwind from our day. In the meantime, Rex the dog, was outside for a half an hour and you figured because you had a fenced yard, everything was fine.
In so many circumstances, it is far from fine. Rex could get bored and he may find the one area of your fence, which may be compromised, to escape. By the time you realize he is gone, Rex may be well down the road, hurt, or picked up by someone. Detective Katz says that this is the number one reason for missing pets.
#2 – Have Your Pet Microchipped and Registered
This is the best solution for increasing your chances of having your pet returned back to you. Most Veterinarians and Rescues have a microchip reader. If your pet is found by a good samaritan and taken to Animal Control, a Veterinarian, or a Rescue, staff there will be able to check for a microchip.
This only works if it is registered. Most importantly, if you move or change your phone number, UPDATE the microchip. A microchip only works if the information is up to date.
Finally, use a microchip company that can be contacted 24/7. You want the finder of your pet to be able to call and locate you at any time, day or night.
#3 – Pay Attention to Collars and Animal Tags
All of my dogs currently have a collar with their name and my phone number on it. I really thought what I was doing was correct. Detective Katz explained, “Never put your pet’s name on a tag, you do not want anyone to emotionally bond with your pet”.
She recommends you buy a black collar with bright color embroidery saying two things: your phone number and the word REWARD. Nothing else. This way anyone that picks up your dog will see the word reward and call you right away. They won’t even think about keeping your pet.
#4 – Beware of scams
Sad but true this is something we have to worry about here in South Florida. Detective Katz explained a recent case where a pet owner paid a transportation company to transport her pet from Fort Lauderdale back to her main home in Oregon.
Unfortunately, the transportation company hires independent contractors to complete their transport jobs. In this particular case, the contractor picked up the dog from the owner, required the fee to be paid up front to him and then never delivered the dog to its destination.
Thankfully the pet owner had taken a photo of the transporters license and with this information, Detective Katz was able to locate him and the dog in North Carolina, thousands of miles away from Oregon. Thankfully this story had a happy ending, Detective Katz was able to convince the transporter to relinquish the dog to a local veterinarian and it was eventually reunited with its owner.
Furthermore, if your pet comes up missing and you receive a call from an individual claiming to have found your dog, require proof. Do not pay rewards until you have been provided proof that they have your pet and it is safe.
Unfortunately, too often opportunists will con emotional pet owners into paying a reward when they never had the pet in the first place.