Does your dog wear an ID tag on its collar?
Putting your contact details on your dog's collar improves the chances that, if you become separated while out on a walk, you'll be reunited very soon.
What's more, it's a legal requirement: since 1992, dog owners have been required to ensure their dog has a collar and tag showing their full contact details -- including name, address and postcode.
In 2016 it also became compulsory for owners to ensure their dog is microchipped -- but new research by Dogs Trust reveals that, while over 90% of owners are aware of the new law, many wrongly think this is the only form of identification their dog needs.
"It is great that so many owners are aware of the need for their dog to be microchipped, but it is concerning that this awareness comes at the expense of dogs wearing more visible forms of identification," commented Alex Jackson, head of campaigns at Dogs Trust.
"As outlined in 1992's Control of Dogs Act your dog's tag should display your name, address and postcode, but our research revealed that 16% of people thought that including a telephone number was enough.
"The details held on the tag and microchip containing the essential details of the owner is one of the simplest ways for a dog to be reunited with its owners should they become accidentally separated. We urge everyone to check they have a tag with the right information on today."
Dogs Trust also stressed the importance of keeping the microchip details up to date when you move house or change phone number.
"The simple process of keeping microchip contact details up to date could be the lifesaving difference for a much-loved pet going home to their owner instead of potentially being put to sleep in a local pound if they aren't reunited with their owner within seven days," Jackson explained.
In a Dogs Trust's survey, two in five (41%) owners who have had their dogs microchipped said that they hadn't got around to updating their details.
Jackson warned: "Sadly, there is still a stray dog problem in this country, and the combination of a lack of collar and tag or a microchip that hasn't been updated could be the difference between a dog ending up in a council-run pound or curling up in its bed at home."