“If your pet disappeared, did you do everything in your power to make sure that they were equipped to find their way home?”
You may think it will never happen to you, but anything from loud noises, (fireworks, thunder storms, the vacuum), to a pets desire to socialize, mate, or chase a bird can lead even a well trained pet astray. Here are a few essentials to increasing your chances of finding your four-legged child if they go missing.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, thousands of pets were separated from their owners. This horrible disaster highlighted the need for permanent identification system that could reunite pets to their owners. Dog-nappers can easily remove a dogs tags and collar, but to remove a microchip would be a difficult surgical procedure. Micro-chipping is a safe and surefire way of identifying you as the pet’s owner. Even if you move, micro-chipping is international and their chip will be recognized by anyone with a microchip reader, (like a veterinary clinic, humane society, or animal control officers).
If you adopted your pet from the Maui Humane Society, your pet has an ear tattoo with a heart and a number that is your pet’s own personal identification. If someone calls the Humane Society to say they’ve found an animal with a tattoo, they can track down the owner. While the benefit of this is that anyone can read the tattoo and call the Humane Society for identification, a few down sides are that some animals may not be friendly enough to look in the ears and a lot of animals don’t like having their ears touched, (especially by a stranger). The tattoos require your pet to be under anesthesia to have it done and they can also fade or become illegible.
If you move off island, it will be a permanent tattoo that will then become ineffective in locating your pet. Ear tattoos on Maui have reunited hundreds of pets with their owners, so if you plan on staying, ear tattoos are an ADDITIONAL option to micro-chipping.
While easily removable, dog-tags, (or cat-tags), are also the fastest and easiest way to connect a found pet to their owners if the owner’s phone number is inscribed on the tag. Tags fade easily, so it’s important to regularly check to make sure your phone number is still legible.
Just in case your pet goes missing, a clear picture to post on flyers and on social media may be the ticket to getting your pet found. Make sure to capture your pets true color and markings.
Lastly, Hawaii is a place where people come and go all the time. Nearly ALL of these identifications become useless if your contact information is not up to date. If you got your microchip from us and need to update your contact information, go to http://www.petlink.net/us/cms.spring?path=/faq.html It only takes a couple of minutes for peace of mind.
If your phone #/contact information has changed since you adopted your pet or had a tattoo done with Maui Humane Society; please call them to update your information. And remember, if a pet is adopted into a new family, get the pet checked for a microchip. If they have one, make sure to update the owner information.
Help us keep our resolution and pass this on...
Mahalo and Happy 2014!
~Your Friends at WMAC