What’s in a Name…..Tag!?!


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As a responsible dog owner your puppy, or dog, should always have some type of identification on at all times. Lost dogs are more likely to be reunited with their owners when there is some type of identification on the dog. There are multiple types of identification to choose from and technological advancements has made identification methods easier!!!

Identification Tag

This is typically an engraved tag that can be ordered online or made at pet store kiosks and attached to the dog’s collar. Most people typically put the dog’s name and the owner’s phone number on these tags. You can also include a limited amount of other information. There are also some website that offer a QR code as the dog’s name tag. Where the owner can update contact information via a web application, instead of having to purchase a new tag when information changes.

Pros: Cheap, custom made, easily accessed if dog is wearing a collar
Cons: Not permanent, can be removed or lost, will need replaced if you move or if contact information changes (unless you use a QR code type tag)
Pro Tip: Add “Needs Meds” or “Needs Medication” on the tag. If someone were to find your dog, they will be more likely to get your dog back to you quickly since they do not know what kind of medications your dog needs. Almost all of our dogs should be on Heartworm Preventative and/or Flea and Tick preventative.


This is a small chip that is inserted under the dogs’ skin. Most responsible breeders or responsible rescue organizations will microchip puppies or dogs prior to leaving for their new homes. If you choose to use this methods of identification I cannot stress the importance of REGISTERING the chip!!!! It is pointless to microchip a dog if you do not register the chip! I have seen/heard numerous stories about heartbroken animal care professionals who have ran into dead ends when a pet’s microchip was not registered.

Pros: Permanent, can upload and change information easily
Cons: Not visible, need veterinary staff or animal control to find microchip, some owners forget to register their chips with the microchip company, some microchip companies require yearly fees
Pro Tip: If your dog was micro-chipped as a young puppy, you may need to put a new one in when your dog is finished growing. Some microchips have been known to move to as far as the dog’s wrists, or farther down the back. Often times veterinary or animal control professionals do not take the time to scan the entire body of a dog for a chip.


This is an older method of permanent identification, but some people still use it. A number is tattooed on the inner rear leg or in an ear. Since there are other less painful methods of identification it its difficult to find professionals willing to perform this method of identification. However, if you have a rescue dog or cat, you may notice a straight line on the dog or cat’s inner thigh. This is often indicitive of the dog or cat having been spayed or neutered.

Pros: Permanent identification
Cons: Causes unnecessary pain/stress during application, if not done properly the numbers can be illegible
Pro Tip: I don’t have one for this method of identification


What’s your preference? Do you know of other methods of identification? Let us know in the comments!!!

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