Your biggest fear realized, you’ve looked all around the house and you can’t find your beloved pet. Panic sets in, tears start to stream now what? First, do your best to relax, take a deep breath, rally the family and make a plan. Here are some strategies to aid in your search if you ever find yourself in this situation.
- As soon as you are certain your pet is MIA, take action. Dogs and cats are most likely to be found within the first 24 hours.
- Ensure that whatever phone number that is listed on the collar (landline or cell) is nearby so no calls are missed.
- Find recent photo of pet and collect all ID information including clear physical description, microchip numbers and any unique identifiers.
- Contact neighbors, local shelters, vets, police department (non-emergency line), animal control.
- When canvassing neighborhood and local area bring along favorite toy and bag or box of treats to shake and create familiar noises that your pet will recognize. Use a warm, friendly vocal tone so that you do not scare your pet in case she or he is hiding.
- Bring paper and pen, flyers, business cards to leave contact information with everyone you come in contact with.
- Leverage social media – there are many FB city and dog missing groups around. Hang posters with your pet’s photo to drive awareness. Post on all public bulletin boards you can find, give fliers to as many mail carriers and package handlers possible.
- Monitor lost and found websites.
Tips to prevent your pet from going missing
- Microchip, GPS collars, electric fence collars
- A snug fitting collar with your contact information—using a distinct collar will also help your pet be identified more quickly
- Never turn your back on your pet, even in the backyard
- Use a leash at all times