One of my biggest worries about setting sail with Honey is reuniting if we got separated.
If the worst happens, I’ve found the best way to keep Honey from staying lost while we’re traveling. And it’s probably a good idea for you too.
Make A Finder Web Page
When you live on a boat or in an RV, a pet tag with a street address makes no sense.
Off-the-beaten track adventures lead you to places with no cell service. So even that won’t help. And how many times can you update your pet’s microchip tracking information before the service decides to charge you a nuisance fee?
I’ve created a simple web page that I can update every time we move. I could link to GPS coordinates or a map of our location.
If you’re on the road with your dog, whether camping or boating or just taking a day trip, you could do the same thing.
Then just put the web address on your dog’s tag (or cat’s tag) so whoever finds him or her knows where to look for you.
Here’s a step-by-step guide for setting up your “find your pet” web page.
How To Make A Web Page To Find Your Lost Dog (or Cat)
It’s easy if you already have a blog or website. But I’ll also show you how to make a free webpage if you don’t already have a site.
If you have a WordPress blog or web page:
- Click on “Pages” in the sidebar of your Dashboard and “Add New” in the drop down menu.
- Title your page and add any information about how someone finding your dog can get in touch. Don’t forget to add pictures or maps.
- After you hit “publish,” make sure your post will not appear in the navigation bar through your theme’s settings. That will keep your page from showing up for everyone to see.
- When you view the page, copy the URL that appears in the browser.
If you have a Blogger blog:
- Go the “Pages” section of your blogger site.
- Create your page so it includes all the information someone needs to reunite you with your dog or cat
- On the drop down menu that shows where your page will show up (probably top tabs or side links), choose “don’t show.”
- Make sure you copy the URL that appears in the browser for your private page.
Make A Free Website On Google Sites
If you don’t have a blog or website, you can save a simple document using Google Sites.
- You must have a google/Gmail account. If you don’t have one, create one here.
- After you’ve signed into your google account, go to Google Drive.
- Click the “New” button on the left side of the page. Choose “more” at the bottom of the page.
- Click “Google Sites.” Note that you must use the Chrome or Firefox browsers.
- Using the tool bar at the top, create your page. You can add links, pictures, formatting, etc. Google continuously saves your work as you go.
- When you’re finished, choose your sharing options. You’ll find them under an icon that looks like two people. Choose “make file readable by anyone with the link.” Then make sure you copy the link.
Now you have a website that you can update with new information any time. It’s time to create your pet’s tag with the web address.
Make A Pet Tag With Your Web Address
Web addresses can be very long (especially the link for Google Drive). And pet tags are very small.
So you have to shrink your web address.
You can do it by creating a tiny URL that will direct anyone using it to your original web address.
It’s that shorter URL that you will imprint on your pet’s tag. You should still have room for your phone number or other information someone who finds your pet needs to know.
Reunited And It Feels So Good
If some kind stranger finds your pet and looks for tags, they’ll find your web address and hopefully track you down.
Honey’s web page will be frequently updated with a picture of her that shows where we’ve landed. I’m also going to include a picture of us as a family so someone who finds her knows we belong together. And I’ll have a picture of our boat with her name prominently displayed so anyone can find her at anchor or in a marina.
I will also insert a map on the page with our current location.
But it’s a work in progress. And it’s a good idea that I wanted to share with my traveling friends.
You can find a simple example here. It doesn’t take much time. And you can be as creative and detailed as you wish.
So don’t run the risk of losing your dog while traveling. And help out that kind person who wants to help a lost animal.
Make a simple website and tag for your pet today. After all, you have nothing to lose but… well, nothing. You have nothing to lose.
Update: Please note that the shortened URL is case sensitive. Make sure the company who prints your tags can engrave lower case letters (many use upper case letters for clarity).
I ordered my tags from Boomerang tags and made special arrangements to print the URL with upper and lower case letters by contacting the company directly. It appears that this tag by PetTags4Less allows you to use upper and lower case letters.
Your Turn: What information do you include on your pet’s tags? Do you think a website is a good idea for your family?