GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — If you ever wished your dog could talk, this might be the next best thing.
The Kent County Animal Shelter is unveiling their new tags that give pet owners a better chance of getting their lost dogs home again.
From old school aluminum dog tags to high tech around your best friend’s neck.
“They’re a really great tool to help pet owners get their pets back home if they go missing,” said Angela Hollinshead, Department Director at the Kent County Animal Shelter.
She is teaching dogs and their pet parents a new trick with the shelter’s new smart dog tags.
“The information that is on this (the tag), that is given to the finder, is completely customizable by the pet owner,” said Hollinshead.
If you’ve ordered from a restaurant since the onset of COVID-19, you know how to use this technology.
If a dog goes missing and has its tag on, the person who finds your pet can simply scan the QR code to find out whatever the pet owner has entered into the PetHub website.
“Privacy is very important to us so the pet parent has full control over the privacy settings,” said Chris Bailey, PetHub, director of sales.
From the pet and owner’s names to a phone number, address, behavioral issues — whatever information the owner chooses can be entered in the website under their pet’s profile.
The tags also prove the dog has had its rabies shot and is licensed in Kent County.
Hollinshead hopes it will cut down on lost and stray dogs being turned over to the shelter.
“Instead of coming to us in the middle of the night, a finder can just simply call the number on the tag, get that owner information that they allow to put on there and get them home and completely bypass us,” said Hollinshead.
“We are currently in over 800 communities across the U.S. as either the local licensing or rabies tag. So it’s definitely something people are becoming more aware of,” said Bailey.
In 2022, all new registers and renewals in Kent County will get one of these smart tags.
Getting a license for your dog costs $17 a year. The PetHub technology is free.
“While having the tag on your pet is great, you’re going to want to activate the tag. That’s where you’re going to see most of the power that comes with it … There’s so many people who say “this could never happen to me, this could never happen to my pet. My pet’s an indoor pet, they never go anywhere, they’re elderly. But things happen,” said Bailey.
If you don’t have a smart phone to scan the QR code, there’s also a phone number and a website to look up the dog’s profile to help get them home.