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The Broomfielder

Lost Pets Easily Find Way Home with Modern Technology Solutions

Jul 02, 2019 03:28PM

By Tina Eichner

Losing a pet or having your pet get loose and run away, can be a very frightening experience for both pets and owners. According to the American Humane Association more, than 10 million American pets are lost or stolen each year! Many of us remember the days when a distraught pet owner would plaster neighborhood store windows and light poles with signs declaring: “Lost Dog.” And you would not think of risking having your dog out and about without a collar and dog tag – just in case. 

Today, thanks to continually evolving technology solutions, these worrisome experiences can be avoided. The possible options are numerous, ranging from tags and collars to electronic chips. Pet name-tags originated more than 200 years ago, but new offerings have elevated the pet tag far beyond a simple tracking or identification device.

Pawscout

A new solution now available at your local Wal-Mart, is Pawscout, the Smarter Pet Tag. Pawscout is smartphone-compatible, connected, affordable, and an easy and fun way for people to build a safe community for their pets. The tag tracks walk distances, and uses live map so people can easily spot their pet in real-time as long as the pet is within a 300-foot range of anyone with the Pawscout App. For extra security, a virtual leash can be set to warn owners if Fido decides to scamper out of view. Pawscout also: 

            •           Sends "Amber Alerts" to local users if your pet goes missing so they can be on the lookout

            •           Allows connection with other users to coordinate walks and playdates

            •           Connects to an app and alerts users if their dog gets out of a designated area 

            •           Helps users find pet-friendly hotspots like restaurants, hotels, etc. 

            •           Creates a community of pet owners by allowing social sharing, liking photos, etc. 

Pawscout tags are available on www.pawscout.com, priced at $19.95 with no monthly fees and the Pawscout App is available for download in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. 

GPS Trackers

There are numerous collars and tags using GPS trackers on the market, where a GPS chip in the tracker monitors your pet’s position and transmits data to your smartphone, with an app to display your pet’s location on a map. These collar- and tag-style GPS trackers range from $50 to $250 with some requiring a monthly subscription. Note that many also require frequent recharging and that some can be bulky. Highly-rated products include Whistle 3 and Findster.

Microchips

Microchipping is a permanent method of electronic identification now popular with many pet owners. The chip is extremely tiny and is inserted just under the skin, right between your pet’s shoulder blades or the back of its neck. Each microchip has a number that can be scanned by a microchip scanner. The unique tracking number in each chip is stored in a database that includes the owner’s details and the pet’s name. The insertion procedure is reported to be fast, easy, and creates little discomfort for the animal. 

The American Veterinary Medical Association said that the likelihood of relocating a lost microchipped animal is 74%, with the percentage dropping dramatically for unchipped pets. But do your homework: make sure that the chip solution you choose is indeed tracked by your local Animal Control department. And if inserting a chip into your pet seems too drastic, remember that there are many other less intrusive solution.

Nextdoor

As we have noted numerous times in this edition of our annual pet issue, people love their pets! And people love other people’s pets too. The modern version of posters on light poles is Nextdoor.com where almost daily you can hear about pets, lost and found, as shared by caring pet owners. While the thousands upon thousands of eyes available through today’s communications networks and channels make finding your pet much more likely, for extra security, a tagging or chip solutions is something to explore.

Pets are family! Keeping them safe and healthy is a priority for all pet owners. There are many tracking and locating solutions on the market. Do your research and find the one that is best for your unique situation and your animal.