With the use and popularity of microchips, many dog owners are going without the traditional ID collar. However, these ID tags offer additional security not available from a microchip. Many pet stores offer custom ID tags to order or machines that allow you to make your own right there on the spot. When it comes to ID tags, you must consider what to put on the tag, as well as how your pet will accept them.
Why an ID Tag?
While microchips are an effective way for shelters to find the owner of a lost dog, they are not something a local person who finds your dog can use. Having an ID serves as added security when your pet wanders off and gets lost. If he manages to wander a few blocks away, the nice neighbor that takes him in will have immediate access to your name and phone number, ensuring your pet makes it home as quickly as possible.
Choosing an ID Tag
ID tags come in a variety of different shapes and sizes. They can be metal or plastic. When choosing an ID for your dog, look for one that is size appropriate. For example, you don’t want to choose a large ID for a toy dog, just as a small ID may disappear on a large, fluffy dog. If your dog is required to wear a metal license tag or rabies tag, you may choose a plastic ID tag to reduce the jingle the two metal tags could make. While plastic tags tend to be lighter weight, they can also break. Check for durability before purchasing.
What to Include
Your dog’s ID tag should include his name, your name, address and phone number. For the phone number, consider using a cell phone number instead of a home phone. While a home phone works when your pet wanders away from home, a cell phone is good if you are traveling when your pet wanders off. Be sure to update your dog’s ID if you move or your phone number changes.
ID Tag Alternatives
Some dogs just don’t like tags hanging from their collar and will do everything they can to get them off. Other dogs may not wear collars because they only go outside in their secure backyard. If this is the case, there is an alternative. An elastic collar with your dog’s name and phone number embroidered on it lays flat on his skin and causes no noise or distraction. This collar is not intended for use when walking with a leash, but can still be worn with a traditional collar.
Deborah Lundin is a professional writer with more than 20 years of experience in the medical field and as a small business owner. She studied medical science and sociology at Northern Illinois University. Her passions and interests include fitness, health, healthy eating, children and pets.