CABOT, Arkansas — The American Humane Association estimates that 10 million dogs and cats are lost in the United States every year.
Over the last year in Cabot, nearly 40% of animals at the Cabot Animal Services shelter were lost pets.
That's why they're now using new facial recognition technology to help connect lost pets to their owners.
Imagine if a single picture could be the key to finding your lost pet more efficiently and effectively. That’s what the app Finding Rover works to do.
The Finding Rover system scans through photos at local shelters to find a match of your missing pet.
Shelby Glover, Program Coordinator for Cabot Animal Services, said the shelter is now utilizing and promoting the technology for all new adoptions.
“Finding Rover uses facial recognition to match lost pets with found pets to get them home,” said Glover. “Everything that comes in our shelter that’s put in our software, goes to Finding Rover.”
Glover said that 3,396 pets came into Cabot Animal Services’ shelter last year.
Almost 1,300 were lost pets they helped reunite with their owner. That’s about 38%. Glover said that’s why they recommend everyone register their pet right away.
“Go ahead and register your dog or cat on Finding Rover,” she said. “Go through your camera phone and find a good picture of their face and register them so that if your pet goes missing, you can post that in the app and everyone on Finding Rover knows they are missing.”
Glover said it's one important step in addition to microchipping and tagging that can help bring your pet home faster.
“Do all the things,” she said. “One thing isn’t necessarily better than the other but they all help.”
Glover mentioned that most pets are reunited with families within the first 48 hours they go missing. Those pets are usually found close to home.
She recommends all people get Finding Rover so if they find a pet, they can upload the pet's picture and help be a reuniter as well.
For more information about Finding Rover visit: https://findingrover.com/
For more details about Cabot Animal Services visit: https://www.cabotar.gov/149/Animal-Services