Identification is crucial to getting your pet returned in an emergency.
Summer is a good time to double-check that your pet's collar tag information is up to date and readable.
And if you're travelling with your pets, make sure the contact information will be valid: Include a cell phone number, or buy do-it-yourself temporary tags and put the local number where you're visiting.
But a collar and tag isn't enough; they don't always stay on. Experts recommend that you also have your pet microchipped.
Microchips can't get lost. Shelters can get the readers for free, so even a poorly funded local shelter should have one. The cost of inserting a microchip varies, but some shelters have low-cost microchipping programs, so ask there first.
For the latest in high-tech pet safety, you may want to consider a pet GPS locator device with a transmitter worn on the collar. Most devices can only be worn by larger dogs, although one, the Zoombak (zoombak.com) can be worn by pets as small as 15 pounds.
But do your research carefully. These devices are not inexpensive, and service plans, battery life, capabilities, range and coverage differ, and all have their pros and cons.
For example, some rely on satellite or cell phone technology, which allows a broader range. Others, such as the RoamEO (http://www.roameoforpets.com), communicate directly with a handheld base, which limits the range, but means you're not dependent on cell phone or satellite coverage and reliability.