The information on your dog tag ID can make the difference between locating your pet and never seeing it again. There is not much space so consider carefully what is most important.
What you should include on a Dog Tag
If your pet is microchipped, it's not a bad idea to attach a second tag to your pet's collar that lists the microchip company's name and phone number. I would also add my cell phone and/or landline number. Someone recommended adding a 2nd tag with a note saying that the pet needs medication asap. Even if that's not the case, it acts as a deterrent for someone to want to hang on to your dog, rather than to return it.
Sometimes a pet is in an accident and if you have pet insurance add the insurance telephone number or veterinarians number saying "I am fully insured". This signals that the cost involved with an emergency room visit is absorbed by the insurance company rather than the person who finds your pet. Anything you can do to increase the chances of your pet getting the care it needs is a good thing. When in doubt check with your vet what they would recommend.
What not to include on the Dog Tag
Do not give out your address. You never know who has picked up your pet and it is safer to meet someone in a public place like a Starbucks. My hubby likes to meet people at our local police department, which I thought was pretty clever.
Some people say not to add the pet's name, since it encourages bonding with the person who finds it. I think your pet might like to hear it's name to be reassured that it is safe.
History of Dog Tags
I love history and if you are like me you might wonder who ever came up with dog tags and why. Apparently president Thomas Jefferson had a problem with his sheep getting killed by dogs. So in the 1850's he created a licensing law in his home state of Virginia to help identify the owners of the dogs. HE figured id the dogs wore a tag on the collar with their owner;s name and license number chiseled into the wood and or metal discs owners could be held responsible for the damage caused by their pets. Eventually the tags became more and more popular and were even used to help identify fallen soldiers.
Today, the dog tags have become a fashion accessory, with cute designs on one side and important information on the other.