Tag Archives: microchip

To Hold or Not To Hold – Is it the law? – That is our question

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Almost every week, we get comments from Good Samaritans who state they took a “found” dog to a shelter or vet clinic to be scanned for a microchip . If a microchip was found, the facility employees told the Good Samaritans they needed to sign over the dog to them because it is “the law”.

We can’t find that darn law. We have actually reached out to directors/managers of other animal control facilities and vet clinics in Illinois to find out if such a state law exists. We check ed other facilities’ policy. They told us that they take the Good Sam’s information so when they contact the microchip company, the owner can call the Good Samaritan directly to retrieve their dog. Therefore the dog never has to enter the shelter. There are not any impound fees or opportunities for the dog to be exposed to other animals with unknown medical histories. This is especially important now when the canine flu is so prevalent. . I think we can all agree that this totally makes sense.

What doesn’t make sense is needlessly impounding found dogs into an already over-crowded shelter, exposing him/her to stress, illness, and possible death by lethal injection. Of course, this also causes stress for the owner and the shelter staff.

Keeping animals out of shelters should be everyone’s goal. If such a law exists that says found dogs with microchips must be impounded, we haven’t seen it.

So Lost Dogs Illinois says Show us the Law!

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Revisit the ordinance to reduce the stray hold period for cats and dogs in Chicago

As most of our followers know, we supported and reposted the petition for Mayor Emanuel and Chicago City Council to revisit the ordinance to reduce the stray hold period for cats and dogs. We want to explain why we agree with the petition.

Last November we voiced our concerns on our Facebook page about the ordinance being passed by the budget committee. We asked our supporters to contact their aldermen and the Mayor to ask them to table it for public discussion. The next Wednesday our director attended the meeting to voice her concerns during public comments and was dismayed to find out that no public comments were allowed. The resolution was passed with 49 ayes. Alderman Pope moved to reconsider the foregoing vote. Motion was lost.

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What could have been done differently?

First of all, the Mayor and the Aldermen could have set aside the ordinance and asked the Commission of Chicago Animal Care and Control (advisory board) to research ways to increase the return-to- owner rates for Chicago Animal Care and Control (CACC).

Here are some ideas that other cities have adopted to increase their return-to-owners rates. (tax dollars being spent wisely)

  1. Offer a “Free Ride Home Program.” Milwaukee, Kansas City, and Washoe County (NV) have similar programs. Animal Care staff will give a pet one free ride home per year if it is wearing a City pet license. No ticket will be issued for the first time licensed pets run at large. This puts licensing in a positive light showing the benefits of what it can do for an owner and their pet.
  2. Offer free or low cost ($5.00) microchip clinics. Washoe County, Nevada offered one year of free microchips and saw a 30% increase in their return to owner rates. (Side note: CA based Found Animal Foundation offers $4.95 microchip with free lifetime registration) In a recent study of US animal shelters, 52.2% of stray dogs and 38.5% stray cats with registered microchips were reunited.
  3. ID Me programs – ASPCA study found shelters that provide engraved ID tags with collars at the time of adoption or redemption show that pet owners will keep the collar w/tags on their pets which provides instant identification.

These are just a few simple suggestions to increase a shelter’s return-to- owner rate. There are many more.

We would like to have these questions answered regarding the reduced stray hold:

  1. Where was the discussion on how this would affect hundreds of thousands of families and their loved family pets in Chicago?
  2. What are the safeguards if a family of a dog or cat of “unknown ownership” comes in after the stray hold with proof of ownership? Can they get their dog or cat back? What is the procedure?
  1. Animal Welfare League (AWL) is the one of three non-city agencies that holds animals for City of Chicago. They do not post photos of found animals. Are the animals held for 3 days at AWL and then transferred to CACC to be held for another 3 days or does the stray hold clock start clicking at AWL.
  2. Because the new ordinance states “In the event the executive director determines that an animal of unknown ownership suffers from severe behavioral issues, the executive director may allow any disposition, of the animal after three days.” What is the definition of severe behavioral issues? What are the qualifications of the person who is determining these behavioral issues?
  3. Finally, where was the public campaign to explain this ordinance to citizens who considered their pets loved family members?

Many lost pets go unclaimed because it is virtually impossible for the average citizen to figure out the “system” in Chicago and Cook County. The owners are looking, but not in the right place, they don’t know where to look and the shelters make the false assumption that the animal is a “stray” or has been “dumped”. Factor in that a large percentage of the urban population speak limited English, have limited finances, transportation and computer access. They may work two jobs or shift work, and cannot visit the stray holding facility during normal business hours. This makes it difficult for people to claim their animals. The reduced stray hold exacerbates the problem.

Again, we are asking that you continue to sign and share the petition. Please send in your questions and comments to your aldermen and the Mayor. Thank you for your support and taking the time to read our blog.

City of Chicago Aldermen

rahm.emanuel@cityofchicago.org  Mayor

@ChicagosMayor Twitter

Mayor’s Facebook Page

susana.mendoza@cityofchicago.org  City Clerk

City Clerk’s Facebook Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mitch – A True Survivor’s Tale

Mitch Collage

This is a true survivor’s tale – a story about a dog named Mitch, a Border Collie Mix who slipped out of his collar and went missing  on 1/20/14 just two weeks after being adopted by a new family.  Immediately after he got loose on that cold winter’s day, his family posted him on Lost Dogs Illinois.  As the weeks went by, they responded to each sighting, started a Facebook page dedicated to finding him, and never gave up hope.  Little did they know that Mitch had  been traveling from Burr Ridge to Countryside, surviving on his own for 6 months. During that time, neighbors were feeding him, the vet clinic was trying to lure him in, and the police were trying to catch him, but Mitch was in survival mode and evaded everyone.  And then, out of the blue, over a year since he’d been lost, a jogger contacted the staff at the Barker Shop in La Grange about this dog he kept seeing.  The shop posted the sighting on their Facebook page, and other people started posting that they too had seen this dog!  The Barker Shop Rescue Team went into action; set up a feeding station and then a humane trap, which they placed in the snow.  Mitch entered the trap right away but the door got caught in the snow and wouldn’t close.  They then moved the trap to an intersection, as Mitch watched their every move.  Once the rescue team returned to their cars, Mitch started sniffing around and got into the trap.  Success!  He was taken, inside the trap, to the vet clinic, where he was scanned for a microchip.  Once the chip information came up on the scanner, Mitch’s owners were called and there was a very, very happy reunion. Smart, brave, resourceful Mitch had survived the Polar Vortex and the Blizzard of 2015.  He did not starve, nor was he killed by coyotes.  Missing 1/20/14,  Reunited 2/08/15.  Welcome Home…at last, Mitch!

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Bobbi “Marley” Story

Rescue is never ever what we anticipate.

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We have literally been through hell these last few weeks.

We wanted to share with you that as of tonight, Marley (Mia) has been safely reunited with her rightful owners. It is a very long story, but we can assure you that she is safe, loved and so wanted.

We discovered that Marley’s microchip was misread at the shelter when we tried to register her. We learned that she was reported missing during the Polar Vortex in February 2014. We are still reeling in this discovery.

We had a very difficult decision to make. We’ve long been advocates of keeping animals safe and we have also shared countless stories of lost dogs and reunification.
We wanted to do right by Marley. We knew that she was found in deplorable conditions. It was easy for us to assume the worst. It was easier to believe that she was better off in rescue.

We were faced with a moral and ethical decision. We prayed like crazy and knew that we had to do the right thing and it was up to the owner to show us how much they truly searched and cared for this dog.

With the help of CACC and rescue friends…our prayers were answered.
Records of their search were shown via microchip and at the shelter. Mia’s owner just gave birth on October 1st and was still in the hospital when she received our phone call through the shelter. She literally discharged early, with her new baby and drove directly to the shelter to be reunited. There was no mistake that this dog was loved, wanted and missed. We are thankful that we could witness the reunification and feel the out pour of emotion. We are also grateful that they want us to stay in touch and visit this special angel.

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Thank you Making A Difference Rescue for sharing Mia (Marley) story.

https://www.facebook.com/Makingadifferencerescue

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Lost Dogs Illinois: More than a posting service…..

stray dog free

You know Lost Dogs Illinois provides free posting of lost and found dogs in Illinois, reuniting over 22,000 dogs in our nearly 6 years of existence, but did you know we do more than that?  Take a look below and read about the other services we proudly provide to the Illinois dog community:

www.lostdogsillinois.org is the LDI website packed with educational and resource materials to help prevent losing a dog and guide lost dog owners on how to find their dog.  Articles providing resources and action plans are just two of the great resources.

Lost Dogs Illinois has partnered with Helping Lost Pets (HeLP). HeLP is a totally FREE, map-based national lost/found registry which provides 4 different flyer templates.

Tips, articles and other useful resources to assist in finding a lost dog or a lost dog’s owner are posted daily on our Facebook page.

Community Outreach Events are an important way for LDI to spread the word about our services, provide educational handouts and provide free microchip scans for dogs.  Also, thanks to an ASPCA grant, LDI is now able to make engraved id tags on the spot at events and provide them at low cost to pet owners.

We believe microchips are an essential part of identifying lost pets and LDI donates microchips to be used by shelters, rescues and animal control agencies at low cost clinics.

Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter are three important social media platforms that LDI also uses.

Education for Animal Welfare Professionals; LDI believes in working not only with the public but animal welfare professionals by presenting best practices for starting a lost dog recovery team and increasing return to owner rates for shelter/rescue/animal control staff.

Also, for owners of lost dogs and finders of lost dogs we don’t just post the dog; they receive an informational email and are directed to our website for tools and resources in lost dog recovery.

So, there is a lot more going on at Lost Dogs Illinois than just the lost and found postings on our Facebook page!  We thank you for your support of all our work.

 

 

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