We do everything we can to keep our homes safe and secure for our pets. But even when we close doors, double check windows and lock the back fence, accidents can occur, and pets can go missing. That's why it's important to decipher fact from fiction and understand how four-legged friends can get lost.

Read on for some common ways pets can escape and how to best prevent these occurrences from happening.

Fiction: Indoor Pets Can't Go Missing

If you have a pet that prefers to stay indoors, such as an indoor cat, there's still a chance they could go missing. Indoor pets often sit by windows and glass doors and may escape if they are left open. Keep your pets secure by double checking doors and windows on a regular basis.

Fact: Accidents Can Happen Even with Pet Professionals

Pet sitters and dog walkers spend a lot of time with animals and although they are pet professionals, that doesn't mean accidents can't happen. If pets are around the front door when a sitter or walker comes in, they can easily run outside. To avoid this, use a doorway gate to separate your pet from the entryway used by your pet sitter or walker. This will allow your pet to walk around the house but keep them from getting through when the door opens.

Fiction: Guests in Your Home Are Already Aware of Your Pets

From time to time, maintenance workers or guests may come and go from your home. Whether they're the emergency plumber, a gardener or your new neighbor stopping by to introduce themselves, any guest unfamiliar with your home or pet could accidently prop a window open or linger with the door open for too long. Make sure to notify new people about your pet as soon as they arrive, share any of their habits and ask them to take precautions so your pet does not get lost. You may also consider putting them in their crate if they're wary of new people or known to bolt.

Fact: Kids Can Be Forgetful

Many kids love to spend quality time with their pets outdoors – it's a wonderful way for them to bond and for both to get more exercise. However, a missed latch on a gate or forgetting to close a door can allow a pet to slip into the neighborhood. Be sure to talk to your kids about pet safety and show them how to properly close gates and doors so they can help keep their pets safe at home.

Understanding how pets can get lost is a great step towards keeping them safe and sound – but it's only one step. Ensure your pets are further protected by microchipping them and becoming a member with HomeAgain®. If they ever go missing, HomeAgain gives them a greater chance of returning home.