Marking Your Pet

photoIdentification is an important aspect of pet ownership, whether you have a cat or a dog. Cities and states require it in order to reduce the number of strays on the streets.

There are several methods of pet identification, one of which is a municipal tag. You can purchase a municipal license tag from your city, and your pet will be assigned a number that is entered into a computer database. The advantage of a license tag, which is attached to a pet’s collar, is that when an animal goes astray, an animal control officer can check the tag number, look it up in the database, then notify the missing pet’s owners.

Pet identification tags are available in plastic and metal. You can choose the color and design just as you would with a collar. Most pet owners prefer reflective tags so the animal can still be seen in the dark. However, these tags sometimes fall off and get lost.

If you would like a more secure method, you can opt to have your pet’s identification information tattooed on one of the ears during the spay/neuter surgery. Tattoos are visible and more permanent, so there is no need to be concerned about tags or collars falling off. Tattoos fade though, so it may have to be retraced from time to time.

With today’s fast-paced technology, microchips have emerged as another means of pet identification. These chips can be embedded in the animal, implanted behind the ears. Each microchip contains all the data about your pet, similar to municipal license tags. The information is saved on a computer database, which an animal control officer can retrieve by scanning the animal’s body.

Pet identification is not just for aesthetics. Having some form of identification on your pet is crucial as it ensures you have a better chance of finding your pet should he get lost. By carrying out this simple but essential task, you can prevent the pain of losing a beloved pet. So if your cat or dog does not have any identification on him yet, what are you waiting for?

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