Our animals aren't just pets - they're members of the family. When they get lost, it can be devastating. With so many perils in the world, from coyotes to cars, the only thing that matters is bringing your beloved pet home safe.

The best option for doing that is to ensure your furry friend is always wearing a pet ID tag. Despite all of the advances in pet location technology, pet ID tags are still the fastest and most dependable means for finding your lost pet. Yes, you can still post signs around the neighborhood and maintain an active microchip so your pet can be tracked. However, these methods are less reliable than having your pet's important contact information immediately visible should someone see your cat or dog wandering around.

Pet ID tags are more reliable because they are instantly recognizable as an accessory of a pet who belongs to someone. Think about it: if you were walking down the street and came across a dog running loose with a dog ID tag on its collar, your first thought would be that the animal is lost. This is no stray, someone is missing this dog.

Fortunately for that dog (or any dog or cat wearing a pet ID tag), all of their owner's contact information is available and you can call the individual listed to let him or her know you've located their pet.

Why a Pet ID Tag?

A pet ID tag offers all of your pertinent information at first sight. This is proven to work a lot quicker in reuniting your pet with your family. Microchipping is certainly a great idea, as it helps to find your pet over distances far and wide and it can be extremely helpful for bringing your pet back.

However, there is no way for a Good Samaritan to know if an animal is microchipped. Passersby may just think it's a stray animal wandering about and they may not choose to get involved. But with a pet ID tag, that passerby can see who belongs to the pet and reach out with the good news of spotting the loose animal.

What Should Be on a Pet ID Tag?

You have a lot of information to provide and a severely limited amount of space to do it. So you're going to want to keep it to the basics. The following are the most important essential data you want to be sure to include on your pet ID tag:

Pet Name

It goes without saying that you want to have the name of your dog or cat on the tag. How else would you expect a stranger to call to your pet when he or she locates the animal? If your pet comes when called, then even more reason to have their proper name visible on their pet ID tag.

Phone Number

This will be the primary method of contact. List whatever number is going to be answered the quickest should you be in a position where you are waiting and hoping for someone to call you with information about your pet's whereabouts.

Special Needs

The biggest challenge for many lost pets with special needs is the lack of medical attention they receive while they are missing. Just one missed dose of medication or a chronic condition left untreated can severely impact your pet's health. But when your pet ID tag lists any urgent medical needs, a Good Samaritan can be made aware of the issue and bring your pet to a veterinarian for care.


Some pet owners will simply list the city in which they live to help their lost pet come home. If your pet has a microchip, this should suffice as your complete information should be registered with the microchip database. Be sure to mention that your pet does have a microchip on the dog ID tag as well.

What is the Best Dog Tag?

There is no one-size-fits-all parameter as to the “best” dog ID tag. The best is the one that works for you and your pet. That means finding a tag that does what it's supposed to do without fail. But with so many tags on the market, you might have a little trouble finding the right one.

So to answer this question, the best dog ID tag is the one that is made from the right material, comes in a size that works for your particular pet, and offers a level of reliability that ensures your pet ID tag will be legible and informative if your pet becomes lost.

In order to find the pet ID tag that works best you need to first decide on the physical attributes of the tag that fit your pet's temperament and lifestyle best.

Engraved Pet ID Tags

First and foremost, may we suggest you go with a tag that can have all of your information engraved into the surface. Engraving on a pet ID tag ensures that all of the important data remains intact and easy to read. You don't want to use ink because it can be washed away in rainy weather. With engraving, your contact information is always clear and easy to read.

Pet ID Tag Materials

Now that we've covered the importance of engraving, it's time to decide what material you are going to have your information etched upon. There is a range of common materials that are used in creating a dog ID tag, each with their own set of advantages and drawbacks. Here are some of the most popular:

Brass Dog Tags

Brass is our top choice for pet id tags because of its durability. It’s why all Two Tails dog tags are made of this material. Brass dog tags will withstand all the roughhousing and playtimes your puppy can throw at it. While brass tags usually come in a limited variety of colors and shapes, at Two Tails we carry a wide variety of unique (and super cute!) brass dog tags.

Stainless Steel

This is the best option for pet owners with highly active pets who are very hard on their accessories and belongings. Choosing a stainless steel tag will make it the perfect solution for those pets that break and destroy without much effort. This tag can take the abuse.


What makes this material so popular with pet owners is the versatility and weight. You can find a wider range of tag shapes in aluminum and the lightweight nature of the metal is ideal for pets of all sizes.


Many pet owners will turn to plastic because it too is lightweight and able to withstand abuse. The engraving on plastic tags is also more dependable as it doesn't begin to fade and wear off as can happen with metal tags under extreme conditions. Plastic pet ID tags are also easy to read, but unlike steel or aluminum, they are easier to crack or break.

Do Dog Tags Bother Dogs?

One might wonder whether or not wearing a dog ID tag is bothersome for dogs. Not all pups enjoy the feeling of a collar around the neck and having that piece of plastic or metal hanging under the chin might be even more annoying. That's why pet ID tags are created in small sizes. They are supposed to maintain a low profile, without interfering in your pet's everyday activities.

But it's not the physical presence of the pet ID tags on the collar, it's the sound they make when the dog or cat is moving around. Believe it or not, the jingle jangle of the tags from even low-impact activities can actually cause more harm to the ears than anything else. The noise has been shown to be bothersome to some pets and it could lead to your pet chewing or scratching at the tag to remove it. That’s why it’s best to have 1 dependable tag attached to your pet’s collar.

Do Dogs and Cats Need ID Tags?

Every pet, dogs and cats alike, should have a pet ID tag on its collar. This is especially important for cats, regardless of whether or not you let them outdoors. Even an indoor cat should be wearing a pet ID tag because cats can dart out of an open door or window without you realizing it. If your kitty isn't microchipped you're going to play a long waiting game, hoping the cat returns home for food. Sometimes that doesn't happen and the cat is lost somewhere in your neighborhood.

With a pet ID tag, a neighbor might see the cat and have the ability to contact you with its whereabouts. The same thing goes for dogs. Your leash may seem like a safe method for protecting your pooch when you're out and about, but leashes can be dropped by mistake, or the leash could snap at the wrong time, and as a result, the dog runs off for whatever reason. Pretty soon, the dog is lost and you're driving around the neighborhood on the lookout. That is not the time to be wondering if you should have attached a dog ID tag.

The only time when you should NOT have a collar and pet ID tag on your dog or cat is inside of a kennel. A collar can get caught and that could pose a major choking hazard to your pet. Cats, in particular, should always be outfitted with a breakaway collar so if it does get stuck inside a kennel door or on a tree branch, the collar will come loose if yanked on with any level of physical effort.

How Do I Attach an ID Tag to a Collar?

Although it may seem like a simple, even trivial, matter as to how you should attach your pet ID tag to their collar, you may be surprised to discover that certain methods work far better than others.


These have been in use for about as far back as we can remember, however, they do pose some potential problems. First and foremost, an S-hook needs to be secured with pliers to ensure that neither side of the S comes loose. You don't want to have your pet running around with a tag that falls off from the end of an S-hook that hasn't been pinched shut properly.

There are other dangers as well, as some dogs have been injured from S-hooks that haven't been pinched shut completely. If you think about it, the end of an S-hook is a sharp point that really shouldn't be near your pet's face. S-hooks need to be routinely monitored and re-pinched to ensure that a pet ID tag doesn't come loose or pose a threat to your pet.

Split Ring

The better alternative is the split ring. It's a much smaller version of the ring on which you keep your house and car keys. Since it's a closed ring, the possibility for the pet ID tag to come loose from the collar is greatly reduced. There is the potential for the ring on the tag to get caught in the spiral of the ring and slowly make its way around as your pet runs and plays. But the likelihood of this happening is minimal. Check periodically to make sure the tag is not stuck in the split ring in order to keep it from falling off.

Pet ID Tag Advice

Now that you've learned more about pet ID tags, you can make the right choice from an informed point of view. The importance of a good dog ID tag can not be overstated as it could be the very thing that makes the difference between finding your pet again. Keep in mind that no tag is going to be indestructible and the lifestyle of your pet is going to play a role in what tag you should purchase. Another thing to consider is having a back-up tag should the first one become damaged or worn down through normal wear and tear. Our Two Tag Bundle is the perfect solution to making sure you always have an extra tag on hand! Always check to make sure your pet's tag is still fully legible at all times. If even one area is no longer visible, it could be time to replace it. Having another on-hand will keep your pet safe at all times, without the need to order a new one and wait for it to arrive.