In an effort to reunite more lost pets with their owners, the city of Lethbridge is launching a photo identification initiative.

Officials are asking residents with licensed dogs and cats to send in photos to be added to the city's database.

Animal control officer Skylar Plourde notes there are over 7,000 licensed dogs in Lethbridge.

"I think it will have a positive return from the public," he said.

"Because obviously, most people who are already complying with the licencing bylaw are just gonna want that one extra piece of security and safety for their pet," he said.

Even the most responsible pet owners sometimes can't avoid having their dog or cat slip away on them, says Plourde, and this is one more way to identify those lost animals and return them home.

"There are some cases where the animal escapes the yard or what have you," he said. "The collar falls off, tag goes missing, now we have no way to identify that that animal is licenced with the city. So, with this photo program, once the animal reaches our facility we're able to compare photographs through our city database."

Pet owners in Lethbridge are asked to email a .jpg format photo, along with their name, account number, address and the animal's name.

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