Friday, February 13, 2015

Lost pets with medical conditions or special needs can be more easily identified with this simple item

Quite often in my daily adventures, I'll see a lost pet roaming the streets and you guessed it — I'll stop and see if I can somehow help get them back to their people. And judging from the numbers of pets that I see on the Humane Society of Huron Valley's Lost and Found page and Facebook pages like Michigan Lost Pet Lookers, a lot of other folks do as well.

That, somehow can be easy or difficult and is dependent on a few variables, but two are crucial: the dog's willingness to approach and what kind of identification they are wearing.

Pet ID tags are a boon in facilitating a fast reunion, so long as they are easy to read and have the right information on them. Ideally, there's a telephone number, address and name of both the owner and pooch. Some folks also include the vet's information on the tag, and I'm always happy to see a rabies and/or a microchip ID tag.

In the past, I've broached the topic of what to do when you find yourself in a situation where you have a lost pet, but the other day, something occurred to me. 

Identification tags and microchips are great, but they give a myopic snapshot of a pet, especially those with health issues or special needs. These days we have a better understanding of the daily management of our pet's health issues like diabetes, Mega E and others, and we've learned to adapt quickly when we share life pets who have sight problems or are deaf. But to someone that happens upon a lost pet and is trying to reunite them with their family, these things aren't as evident and that might complicate the situation. 

If you have a pet with special needs, you might consider having an additional tag made that had a little blurb like, "I'm diabetic!", "I have epilepsy", "I'm deaf!" or "I'm allergic to [insert allergy here]". 

You could certainly create ID tags like this at a kiosk at most pet stores. However in my research, I've discovered that there are websites including and (this site sells tags that are quite eye-catching, with a white cross over a brilliant red background) where you can order snazzy-looking tags that fit the bill. 

Lorrie Shaw is a freelance writer and owner of Professional Pet Sitting. Shoot her an email, contact her at 734-904-7279 or follow her adventures on Twitter.

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