In case of wild dogs, please call …

While I was out walking early one morning, I had a thought: “What if I keel over, or get chased by wild dogs, or am hit by a car?” (Because I think about these kinds of things during my morning walks.)

wild_dogs-web“Perked up African dogs” courtesy of the World Wildlife Federation

“Even if someone found me — presumably motionless and covered in wild-dog bites, or maybe coated in gravel and twigs, but obviously still clutching my phone — they wouldn’t know who to call.” (Because I also think in long and detailed parenthetical statements.)

Then I had an inspiration: Why not create an In Case of Emergency (“ICE”) list for my phone’s lock screen?

Fake ICE screen

I happen to have an iPhone, so advance apologies for the Apple-centric instructions — but I suspect the process would be similar for other phones as well.

Step 1

Start by creating a document measuring 640 X 1136 pixels. You can use any image, but I made a gradient so the time and date are legible. Here’s the template:

iPhone gradient template


Step 2

Add whatever info you’d want a potential phone-finder to see. (I listed just my contact info, but you may want to add allergies, doctor info, religious requests, a photo of your cat, your Nana’s meatloaf recipe, etc.)


Step 3

Save the document as a JPEG and email it to yourself. Once your email arrives, save the JPEG to your camera roll. Then go to Settings > Wallpaper & Brightness > Choose a New Wallpaper.


Step 4

Scroll to “camera roll,” and choose this image as your LOCK SCREEN image. You may have to resize it or center it a bit. Once you like the result, hit “set.”

Voilà! You’ve got your all-purpose emergency contact screen.

iPhone screen 1140043 BLOG

Alright, then. That’s about enough public service for today. I’m off to try my luck with the wild dogs. Happy Sunday to you, and stay safe out there!


    • I’m very glad to hear this, Tom — hyenas and wild dogs are one of the greatest undiscussed threats to our personal and national security, so it’s critical that we all be vigilant. (Ha, ha.)

    • Hahaha, Mark! Actually, I was thinking about you as I was writing this post, because I never used to worry about wild dogs until I started reading about your adventures in Bulgaria. Now I think about wild dogs all the time. All. The. Time. So, thank you for that.

      PS: Cyrillic business card?! That’s awesome.

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