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Pet Theft Awareness Day

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Preventing And Understanding The Dangers Of Pet Theft

We love our pets like they’re our family. Which is why it’s so scary to think about someone stealing or hurting our furry friends. Sadly there are people in this world that are desperate and deplorable enough to steal another person’s pet for profit. Although unlikely, it’s still a very realistic possibility that someone may one day attempt to “petnap” your pet. We are going to cover that realistic possibility and outline the various ways you can prepare and/or prevent this tragedy from happening to you. 

An Important Holiday

February 14th is typically remembered for being Valentine’s Day. However, February 14th also celebrates another important holiday known as “Pet Theft Awareness Day.” This holiday was originally founded in 1988 by the Last Chance For Animals Organization, an international non-profit organization that advocates for animal rights. Pet Theft Awareness Day was created to help educate animal owners in keeping their pets safe from thieves. To many people the idea of having their pet stolen seems silly and/or unlikely. But, the threat is very real. Nearly two million pets are stolen from their owners every year in the U.S.  

Tips To Prevent Your Pet From Theft

We all want to keep our pets safe. But, that is often easier said than done. The best way to keep your pets safe from theft is to take preventative measures. Although we can’t predict the future, there are still several different methods you can implement to reduce the chances of pet theft. Firstly, use a leash at all times. Dogs can be easily spooked from loud noises and have been known to run away out of pure instinct making them an easy target for pet thieves. To learn more about proper dog walking safety, check out our previous blog entitled Dog Walking Safety Tips. Second, don’t leave your pet unattended in the backyard or any open space. Even with a fenced-in yard, pets (especially dogs) tend to make a lot of noise and attract a lot of attention which again makes them an easy target for pet thieves. Always be situationally aware of where your pet is and what they’re doing. It is also recommended to avoid taking your pet with you when you go shopping. Leaving your pet in the car or tying them up to a nearby pole while you do your grocery shopping is a very risky move and puts your pet at risk of being abducted. Lastly, consider utilizing pet microchips. They are both safe and affordable and will help you locate your pet should they go missing. These microchips also carry the identity of the pet and their owner to prevent a pet thief from passing them off as their own at a veterinarian office. By taking these preventative measures, you can potentially avoid having your furry friend stolen and ensure their safety. 

What To Do If Your Pet Is Stolen Or Missing

Should you find yourself in the unfortunate situation of your pet missing, it’s important to remember to remain calm. Whether they have been stolen or ran away, remember there are plenty of resources at your disposal to help locate and find your furry friend. As mentioned previously, having a microchip implanted in your pet is an amazing tool to help track your pets location. Pet microchip companies such as HomeAgain and PetLink offer 24/7 support to help locate, track, and find your missing furry friend. Aside from contacting your pet microchip company (if applicable) try calling your local pet shelters and animal control agencies and place a lost pet report. We also recommend contacting your local police department and providing them with both a recent picture and a detailed description of your pet. It’s also important to never stop searching. Don’t just sit around waiting for someone else to find your pet, go out and search your neighborhood. You can walk along streets your pet might be familiar with or just drive around the local streets within a couple mile radius of where you last saw your pet. Get your friends and family involved and put together a search party for your furry friend so you can cover more ground in a shorter amount of time. You can also try putting up advertisements for your missing pet in various places such as community centers, veterinarian offices, telephone poles, etc. Offering a small reward is also a great incentive for any good samaritan to keep a close eye out for your pet.

The Value Of Your Pet

Losing a pet from sickness or old age is a very sad, but ultimately inevitable experience. However, having your pet stolen from you is a truly horrific and tragic thing to experience. We sincerely hope this never happens to you, but we also hope that this information proves useful to you should such a horrible thing occur. Our pets are our family and you simply can’t put a price on the value of family. Learn from the mistakes of pet owners who were negligent and had their pets stolen and remember that proper pet safety begins with preventive measures and constant vigilance. Your pets are counting on you to keep them safe and out of harm’s way.

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