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Lee County Domestic Animal Services stresses hurricane prep

Kitten named baby, up for adoption
Posted at 9:02 PM, Jun 08, 2023
and last updated 2023-06-08 22:31:38-04

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Losing a pet is never easy.

Lee County Domestic Animal Service is stressing the value of microchipping. It advises it should be a part of your hurricane preparation.

Karen Frick is a Public Information Specialist with the county. She says the technology is proven to help reunite pets with their families. In Ian's aftermath, 60 pets on Fort Myers beach were successfully sent back home. This effort was shared by people who live in the area turning pets in and the county searching for displaced animals.

Amanda Dockery can speak to the situation personally. While her dog Sushi was not displaced during Hurricane Ian, the Australian Shepherd went missing earlier this year.

"Unfortunately she wasn't microchipped when we got her," Dockery said.

While Dockery says she's checked with the county and has found her dog isn't there, she's remaining hopeful Sushi will return home. She hopes others take the opportunity to microchip and she wishes she had.

Sushi, Amanda's missing dog

It's in Lee County's ordinance code to bring a found animal to the shelter to check if it's chipped and return it to the rightful owners. Frick says people can claim a pet if no owners come forward.

The county has a universal scanner, unlike some vet hospitals. It will pick up on any kind of chip where other scanners may not. A microchip will bring up a serial number assigned to your pet. It's associated with a file holding an owner's latest updated phone number and address.

"If you're not sure, come on in. We'll scan it, we'll check it for you, make sure it's up to date in our system," Frick said.