July 20, 1998
Advice on protecting beloved pets
The fourth of July is supposed to be a celebration! But for us, we spent the day calming our three dogs down. For many animals it is a terrifying day. One day of exploding fireworks is bad enough, but here in Woodinville we experienced seven days of it. Our female Blue Healer was so terrified of the noise she cowered in the house.
Then when the fireworks stopped, she bolted like a wild horse in a thunder storm and ran away due to the noise of our tiller and lawn tractor. We are hopeful for her safe return, but have learned some real vital lessons that we would like to share with your readers.
We had lived on Queen Anne Hill for the last 15 years and everyone in the neighborhood knew our dogs. They saw our mother dog give birth to nine darling little pups and watched them grow. Two neighbors became the proud owners of two of these wonderful, intelligent Blue Healer/Border Collie puppies. If our little tri-color female had been lost on Queen Anne she would probably be home right now because so many neighbors knew her. Lesson learned.
If you have found an animal and are the person responsible for that animal's care until the animal is picked up by Animal Control or the owner is located, always leave a name and a phone number where you can be reached (home or work.)
- When you move to a new neighborhood make a point of meeting your neighbors and if you have animals, let the neighbors know.
- Always have the pet's I.D. collar on or an I.D. computer chip imbedded. Note: Animal Control Shelters scan for I.D. computer chips, but veterinarians do not unless an animal is thought to be found. (In our opinion, all newly examined animals should be scanned for I.D. chips whether or not the person bringing in the animal says they found it.)
- License your animal and keep it up-to-date. While our dog was licensed in Seattle, we did not have her address changed. In our case, if she had had her old tags on, we could still be reached because we have the same phone number call forwarded. It was on the "To Do List" tomorrow. Tomorrow never came, and now our little dog is out in a strange world unidentified. The important lesson is to protect your pet when you move by having them licensed and an I.D. chip implanted. They cannot talk, we must do it for them.
- We are doing everything we can to find our dog. We have gone to the Crossroads King County Animal Control Shelter that serves Woodinville, listened to the list of newly found animals on the hotline, called PAWS, the Bellevue Humane Society, called all the area veterinarians, put flyers up and talked to our neighbors. That is how we learned our little dog was actually rescued. A woman in a gold Saturn was kind enough to stop her car and with the help of someone from the urgent care clinic and a neighbor boy coax our dog to the parking lot of the clinic. That is where the information ends.
- If you find a stray animal and it has its tags, call the number listed to report your find. If the animal does not have tags, as in our case, do not remove it from the area until you have made some inquiries as to the dog's ownership. We personally have rescued and found the owners of three dogs and two cats.
Be kind to the animal that is lost. Put yourself in the place of that animal. How would you feel being in strange surroundings, with new faces and no one knowing your name. If an animal appears well cared for, make every effort to find its rightful home. In our case, our mother dog is carrying our lost dog's ball around, and our male dog misses his sister.
The most important lesson of all is leave your name and phone number where the animal can be located so that if someone finds the owner first, they can find you.
Our hope is for Holly's safe return. We love her and miss her very much. She is one of the sweetest dogs we have ever cared for. Please call if you have any information on whereabouts of a female, tri-color Austrian Blue Healer: (425)-806-4646 or 1-(888)-400-BARN.
Lila and David Chapman, Woodinville