Police always say to have a current picture of your child, just in case. Now, a national database wants you to do the same for your pets.
One in three pets will go missing in their lifetime, and now the hope is that the Love Lost facial recognition program, created by Petco, will help get them home again.
If your pet goes missing, you upload the picture to the database. “It uses facial recognition technology to source the Petco database, to help [bring] that pet back to your home,” said Emily Wallace, with Lost Dog & Cat Rescue Foundation in Arlington, Virginia.
Its rescue dog database is part of the system, as are many photo logs of animals in other shelters and rescues.
It’s also helpful for those who find themselves temporarily caring for a lost animal.
“You would upload a photo of the lost animal,” Wallace said. “That way, whoever is looking for that animal can then have a match to be able to know where that animal has been located.”
She recommends pet owners not wait until their pet is lost to sign up.
“You can proactively go on Petco Love Lost and create your animal’s profile,” she said. “So in the case that your animal does go missing, your pet’s information is already uploaded and you can immediately start sourcing the national database.”