Specialty dog tags concerning pet owners

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX -- It's been a few days since a mixed breed dog with sad eyes was found wandering in Mesa.

Animal control officers picked him up around the 9100 block of Apache Trail.

The light brown half Labrador and German Shepherd was brought to the county shelter.

The 5-year-old male dog has a tag on, but the contact information is gone.

“We have no way of identifying the owner or contacting the owner,” said Audie Greybear with the shelter.

A 3TV viewer sent us pictures of her dog "L1ouie" with the same dog tag, and his contact information is also missing.

The owner bought the tag at PetSmart for near $20.

Now this pet owner regrets the purchase.

Animal rescues encourage pet owners to buy a dog tag without separate pieces, similar to the tags given to dogs that are adopted out by the county shelter.

“It doesn't have any parts that can come apart. It's very secure,” said Susan Hopkins with Feathers Foundation.

Sadly, the contact information on the shelter dog could've been removed on purpose.

“When owners no longer want their dogs they'll go ahead and extract the information off their dogs and it has happened here before,” said Greybear.

The rescue group Feathers Foundation plans on adopting the dog if the owner is not found.

A spokesperson for TagWorks, the manufacturer of the dog tag, sent 3TV this statement:

“We sell over 4 million tags a year across the 30 designs offered at PetSmart and rarely hear of this type of issue. PetSmart Customer Service department is great about passing along any reports and I only have record of two separations in this series.

Each design goes through a rigorous testing process and we strive to improve.

This particular design did have a change to the staking process back in 2011 to strengthen the premature wear caused by constant contact with the metal buckle.

Since this change we have not heard of any separation occurrences and without knowing the age of this tag I cannot say whether it is related.

We welcome customer feedback which is shared with our production team allowing us to make continued improvements to our products.

Our goal is to ensure each pet has quality identification so if ever lost they are returned home,” said Cynthia Rockwell with The Hillman Group.
The Maricopa Co. Shelter is having a special on adotions Valentine's Day Weekend. 

On February 15-17 dogs can be adopted for $51.00, that's almost half the price of their normal adoption fees.

Cats and kittens are free during that time too.