Sunday, January 2, 2011

Your Dog Needs ID Too

What you are looking at is actually a "Geocache" here in town, but it's perfect for the task.  If not something like this little pill sized thing, a standard "dog tag" with your cell number, email address, or home address is easy to get at any of the big box pet stores.

I will be getting one of these in another day or so.  I may even put a dollar bill in the thing (they're very small) for the phone call if it will fit.

Why I'm thinking about this is what happened last night...

(Cue the spooky music and the fading photographic merge to the next scene)

After dark last night, we were sitting around watching an episode of Lost In Space.  While laughing at the old campy show and feeling very uncomfortable with Dr Smith's interaction with the Robinson children, I looked outside and noticed the security lights go full brilliance.

I said "Hey!  Someone's on the property!".

Kevin hopped up and looked out the window in the door and said that he didn't see anyone, and backed off and sat down to more "Oh my..." from Dr Smith.  (Cringe)

The lights came back up again.  That was out of the ordinary for any time other than Thursday or Sunday morning when Zone 1 is watering the front lawn.  One of the sprinklers trips the security lights every time it sweeps across the lawn... got to fix that some day...

This time he hops up again and actually opens the door and is jumped on by ... an overly friendly Chocolate Labrador Retriever!

He backs off acting afraid, and I'm the one here who can read dogs better I suppose, so it was on me.

Padding over to the door and forgetting the shoes, I crack open the door.  I immediately am greeted by snuffling nose, a big pink tongue and some whimpering.  Awwww how cute!

Stepping out the front door, the back of my knee is wet from my own Lettie.  She's a problem child with other dogs and is generally terrified of them so I told her to back up and I stepped out to greet this wiggly pile of chocolate adolescence.

Luckily this dog had on two collars, one chain for a leash and a second collar for a Broward County Rabies Tag.  We were able to get a number off of that as well as a phone number.  By this time I had given the information to Kevin with the spare leash and I was entertaining the dog that Kevin was already naming Buddy.

After he called the county to see if we could find out the owner and the pet store, we hit the first road block.   The dog was taken to the big box store, Pet Supermarket for his rabies shots.  Great, at least we had a clue, but apparently Pet Supermarket is incompetent at turning in information to Broward County so the little wiggler could get home. This being the night of New Years, Pet Supermarket is closed.

While I'm outside in stocking feet, I'm getting pulled all over the front yard.  I passed the back up leash to Kevin and went in and got shoes on while we were greeted by Scott from around the corner.   He had a loose pit bull with a similar collar.  Either a neighbor had a fence break down and the dogs went exploring or someone abandoned two or more dogs.  With a pit bull out loose there was a bigger problem, the pit would more likely to be put down if turned into the shelter even if the dog was a very reserved dog and friendly in it's own way

So we had two more dogs, couldn't store them in my yard because of wandering wildlife and my own dog's dislike of other dogs.  Scott has an apartment and two small dogs of his own so he was stuck too.

The bottom line is that in Wilton Manors, an outside pet is acceptable until it becomes a wandering pet.  If it is off of the property it is a stray.   Outdoor cats will wander and immediately are considered a nuisance and can be turned in legally.  If it is a pet, keep it indoors.  If it gets off your property you may lose it.

While we were outside creating this ruckus, the neighbor came by and was suggesting, repeatedly, that we surf websites in rapid fire order.  Not possible since we can't do that outside easily and we can't take the two new dogs inside to do that... but...

She said it kind of looked like someone's dog down the block.  After about five or so times of hearing that we asked her to contact that neighbor and all was well.  The dogs belonged to that person down the block and we reunited dogs with relieved owner.

So what did we learn from this:

1) Pet Supermarket is a good place for supplies but don't trust them to do the right thing and follow through with the record keeping after you get your rabies shots.

2) Always have two collars for your dog.  One for the leash, one for the tags.  If the dog bolts off of the leash at least it will have its tags.

3) Get a dog tag with your phone number and info on it.

4) Introduce your dog to your neighbors.  For that matter introduce yourself to the neighbors.

5) No Outside Pets.  If it gets loose it could be the end of your pet from capture to cars and worse.

I think we're taking a road trip to the pet store today.  While *my* dog won't roam... there's always a chance.

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