Obviously, this is a ridiculous story because no one in 2019 would be so clueless about basic fire safety that they would set three fires in three weeks. If they did, they would probably be in jail. Over 3 million dogs and cats are going to get lost this year, and that number doesn’t seem to have gone down in the 11 years that I have been finding lost pets. We know why dogs and cats go missing. We know of proven, easy, inexpensive ways to prevent them from going missing, and yet the local shelters are full every day with dogs and cats who could have gone home right away if they just had an ID tag, a license, or a microchip. Local Facebook pages are constantly full with new missing pets every day. I have written several articles on loss prevention. Tino and Fozzie and I made a short video that people can share easily, to help prevent dogs going missing. I offer free training to nonprofit rescues in order to help keep newly adopted dogs safer. As a nation, why are we so slow to adopt basic procedures to prevent dogs and cats from going missing? Why do we keep trying to put out fires instead of preventing them?
I hate the Fourth of July because the hot weather makes it harder for the search dogs to work, and the illegal fireworks create the highest demand for lost pet rescue every year at this time. Tino and Mu and Fozzie would love to work, finding lost cats and dogs, but they can only work effectively when the temperatures are lower. Some summer days, the overnight low is higher than the working temperatures my dogs can tolerate. It’s not just that they become uncomfortable. If they have to cool themselves by panting, then the incoming air bypasses the olfactory sensors in their noses, drastically reducing their abilities. I want to help find as many lost pets as I can, because I like helping dogs and cats. It’s all I do most days. But wouldn’t it be easier on people if they could take some simple measures to prevent their pets from going missing? Right now, I have people waiting for me to call them back about their pets that are currently missing. How does taking up valuable time talking about loss prevention help those pets that are missing today? If we can spread the word about basic loss prevention measures, then right away, as soon as tomorrow, we can prevent some of these pets from going missing, freeing up resources for the ones that are lost. Sure, accidents will always happen, but so many of these lost pet situations would be so easily preventable.
I am officially declaring the week before the Fourth of July “Pet Loss Prevention Week.” For the next week, I will share stories about my dogs and loss prevention in the hopes of calling attention to the problem and hopefully making a dent in the numbers. 3 million pets missing every year. It should be fewer than 300,000. We could cut those losses by 90% with just some basic awareness and simple precautions. It would be so much more effective than building a new fire station near every Joe.
Please help by sharing one of these loss prevention links with someone you know. If you have ever lost or found a cat or dog, you know how traumatic it can be for the pet and the owner. Tell a neighbor or a friend, and be a hero by preventing a lost pet, before it becomes an emergency.
https://youtu.be/NRq4rGKyaZk A short video with loss prevention tips.
http://www.3retrievers.com/prevent-your-dog-becoming-lost.html Fozzie’s tips for loss prevention for dogs.
http://www.3retrievers.com/loss-prevention-for-cats.html Loss prevention for cats.