Thursday, September 10, 2009

Lost & Found System


Hi All,

It has been a while since we have talked about the Lost & Found system, long enough that some of you may not even remember that it exists! Some exciting and important changes are being made to provide more services for people and animals in our community. But, first a quick recap of the system and how you can use it on your web sites to help animals:

The Lost & Found provides a shared, open, Internet-based resource for people in Minnesota to post photos and descriptions of animals they have either found or lost. In the last 2 years alone 1,499 lost or found pet records have been added to this system, helping countless pets in our community to be reunited with their families.

The Lost & Found system is designed to be integrated into any web site, so that organizations using it can direct people to their own web sites to make use of this important functionality. Links to PetFinder and to information about where to find impound centers are also provided in the system. Impound center information is provided by Second Chance Animal Rescue.

There are a variety of different ways an organization can incorporate the Lost & Found functionality to their web site, including:

Direct Linking: Simply add a link to the following URL to your web site:!OpenForm

You may also integrate this same URL into a frame or iframe on any web page on your site.

Free customization of the screen is also available to help match colors and fonts of existing web pages.

Now - On to the exciting news!

Beginning sometime today, new features to the system will include:

Email notifications of Lost & Found pets. To assist animal control centers and shelters that accept stray animals, the system will begin sending email notification to key staff at these organizations to be on the lookout for lost pets, or to help cross-reference stray animals they have picked up with notifications of lost pets.

To ensure the correct person within your organization is receiving these notices, please respond to this email with the email of the address to which you would like these notices sent.

Beginning sometime within the next month, people who post lost pets will be able to subscribe to a Twitter feed that will direct emails to them about posted found pets in the system. They will be able to direct these messages to their email address, or have text messages sent directly to their cell phones. They may also opt to have notices sent to both places.

Posting a description of a found pet, or a stray animal taken in, will then automatically notify those people receiving these messages. Eventually, using TwitPix technology, we plan to be able to transmit photos of found pets to the cell phones of people who are looking for their lost pets.

For more information about this system, call Mike Fry at (651) 964-3140.

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