A dog might wear several different identifying dog tags.
A dog tag is a small flat tag worn on
harnesses by dogs,
usually with identifying information such as the owner's telephone number so
that the owner can be notified if the dog is lost.
Dog tags were traditionally worn on a chain, rope, or collar around the dog's
neck. The resemblance of human identification tags to this method of display led
to them also being called dog tags; see
dog tag (identifier). Some dogs wear harnesses instead of collars, so tags
might be attached there instead. Most humane societies and rescue organizations
recommend that dog tags be on a buckle-type collar rather than on a
slip collar, because the former remains more securely fastened around a
dog's neck when slipping through a fence or being held by a stranger.
Identifying information on a dog tag might include:
- The dog's
license number and contact information for the licensing organization
- Dog's name
- Owner's phone number, address, or both
- An identifying number for the dog with a phone number for a lost-pet
- Information about the dog's critical medical issues or
- A notice that a reward will be paid for the return of the lost dog
- For fun, the dog's titles, or information about the dog's behavior, such
Canine Good Citizen tag
Some organizations recommend not putting a dog's name on a tag because, in an
ownership dispute over a stray dog, the original owner could use the dog's name
to demonstrate that the dog recognizes the name and therefore has an association
with that owner. Others believe that a lost dog might feel more comfortable if
strangers call it by its own name.
Tags are made of many different materials. Metal tags usually have the
embossed or etched onto the surface, and might also have electronic chips
embedded. Plastic chips can be etched or printed, come in many colors, and are
often highly reflective to make the dog more visible if it gets loose and runs
into the street after dark.
Dog tags on a collar are easiest to use for random people who find a dog
Although dog tags can help to return a stray or lost dog to its owners, they
are unreliable as a sole source of identification for several reasons. The owner
might move or change phone numbers and forget to update the tags. Dogs often
leave their collars behind when escaping from a yard, particularly when
squeezing through or under a fence. Some owners don't want their dogs wearing
collars unsupervised, and unsupervised dogs are more likely to be able to escape
from a yard. Well-intentioned rescuers might remove the dog's collar and tags to
be able to read the phone number, and the dog might disappear again. Collars and
tags can also be removed intentionally by thieves, leaving the dog
registering the dog's license number, microship information, and tattoo number
with lost-pet registries are strong backups to the collar dog tag, but cannot be
completely relied on, either, as people unfamiliar with such technology might
not know to check for such identification or be able to figure out where to
call. Another option is
DNA fingerprinting although this is much more rare.
| Animal Muzzle
| Crate Training
| Dog Collar
| Elizabethan Collar
| Dog Harness
| Dog Tag
| Martingale (Fastener)
| Microchip Implant
| Dog Sled
| Dog Whistle
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