Don’t be a (dog) loser!

Are you keeping your dogs secured?

So many dogs go missing every day. Some are even found and reunited with their owners, only to be lost again. Let’s not lose our delightful dogs.

Approximately 10 million pets in the US are lost from their owners, according to the American Humane Association. Sadly, only a small percent of those pets are ever reunited with their original owners. Many of these lost pets also never make it to a shelter.

Jessica Silva, one of our dog care associates, is as active as she can be on social media helping owners find their lost pets. She’s part of many Facebook Pages and Groups, such as Fresno Humane Lost/Found Pets, Tower Pets: Lost and Found, and others. She has helped 20-30 people reclaim their dogs, and she continues to do so.

“We need to take more time to figure out how our animals are escaping,” Jessica said, “and find ways to keep them safe.”

Below are four more tips from Jessica on how to not lose your dog:

  1. Update your fencing. If you have loose fencing, holes, broken fences, etc, get them fixed as soon as you can. If you don’t have the means to do so at the time, then it’s even more important to find a way to safely secure your dog.
  2. Get your dog spayed or neutered. When your dogs go into heat, they will want to run off and find a partner! They won’t be able to control that. We have a low-cost clinic and surgery annex on premises. Head to for more information.
  3. Give your dog plenty of toys. Sometimes dogs will get bored and will want to wander around and explore. They may not intend to leave their homes, but their boredom can cause them to go out seeking adventure and then get lost!
  4. Microchip your dog. If your dog does get lost, the microchip will allow shelters or veterinarians to contact you if your pet is brought in. Valley Animal Center offers microchips for $25. Don’t forget to register your microchip!

Jessica also suggests you pay attention to your dog’s habits. If your dog’s a jumper, that may be a sign you need higher fencing. If your dog likes to dig, you may need to check your premises more often to make sure they haven’t unintentionally dug a way out of the yard. If your dog loves to bolt when a door is open, you’ll need to be more cautious when opening doors to the outside!

One dog Jessica has rescued is Zola, a black lab/pit mix Jessica found lost and running in the streets. Jessica said she fostered Zola for four days. Sadly, Zola’s family never turned up. Jessica brought the lost Zola to Valley Animal Center and after a second adoption, Zola is now living with a happy family and even has her own Instagram: @goodestgirl_zola!

While Zola’s story ends with “happily ever after,” not all lost dogs are as fortunate.

Prevention is always the best measure to keep your dogs, and pets in general, safe and secure. We don’t want anyone to lose their precious dogs!