Our pets are like our family members and we love and cherish them just the same. So, if you have a puppy of your own, probably your worst nightmare is losing them. However, unfortunately, this scenario is quite common since dogs are known to be curious creatures who can easily forget about themselves in their excitement as they are exploring their surroundings. Moreover, being so friendly and playful, they might let strangers approach them and end up being stolen while you are not looking.
Statistics are rather staggering when it comes to dog theft. For instance, just in the UK in 2018, almost 2,000 dogs were taken from their owners! Some breeds such as Pugs, French Bulldogs and Chihuahuas are particularly at risk of being stolen and resold or similar. To prevent this from ever happening to your fur baby, there are certain precautions that you should take. Here are a few of them.
Fix your fence
Over half of the dogs that are stolen are taken from the owner’s backyard. What this means is that the security of your yard is a top priority. Some dogs are very crafty at digging themselves an escape route while others can jump higher than you’d believe, so a solid, sturdy fence is a must for all dog owners, even if you keep your puppy indoors most of the time. If you already have a fence, inspect it for possible holes and fix it if necessary. Needless to say, you should keep your gate closed and locked at all times, too. Installing a surveillance system will not hurt either if you can afford it.
Pay attention to your dog while walking
When you’re walking your dog, there are several things to keep in mind. First of all, always use a leash. Your dog might not like this, but the truth is that you never know what can happen when your dog is off the leash. Something might scare them or evoke their hunting instinct, and that can lead to them running out of your sight. If you do let your puppy off the leash for a short time, never leave them unattended and never lose sight of them even for a second.
Be wary of thieves
Dog thieves may observe the dogs they target for a while before they take action. Walking your dog at the same time and at the same place every day is thus not recommended. So, what you should do is try to vary your routes as much as possible so that they can’t predict when and where you are going to be. Your puppy will like the variety too! If you notice that a stranger is getting a little bit too nosy with their questions about your dog, watch out. In addition, leaving your dog outside while you step into the grocery store or similar is out of the question. Those 5 minutes are more than enough for someone to snatch your puppy.
To be prepared in case something happens, such as your dog wandering off farther than they should have, you should make sure that they are never without identification. Your dog should always wear a collar with a tag that contains your most important contact information, such as your phone number. Get some eye-catching glitter pet id tags and rest assured the person who finds your puppy will be able to contact you. In addition to a shiny tag, you should also ensure your dog is microchipped. Just take your puppy to the vet and they will do it for you in no time. Although these measures do not actively prevent your dog from getting lost or stolen, they can mean the difference between a happy ending and a sad one in case someone finds them.
Those who want to take tracking their dog a step further also have a lot of options today. Besides an ID tag and a microchip, some people also opt for GPS pet trackers as these can actively notify you of your dog’s location at all times. This collar attachment will allow you to track your puppy through an app and get valuable information about their activity. The only downside is that if your puppy gets stolen, the thief will probably take the tracker off. However, for lost pets, this is a life-saver.
Losing one’s beloved puppy is every dog parent’s worst nightmare. So, make sure you are responsible while walking your pooch and that you take all the necessary precautions to prevent an unpleasant situation from ever occurring.