Submit a lost dog or cat report. The report, which will be kept for several weeks, includes identifying information about your pet such as breed, gender, spay/neuter status, appearance, microchip information, and more. Submitting a recent photo of your pet is also helpful. Please note that filing a report does not guarantee that we will recognize your pet or be able to notify you if she is brought to the shelter. Please call weekly to update us on your search, and let us know if/when your pet is found.
Come to the shelter to view the stray animals, even if you have filed a lost pet report. You are the only person that can positively identify your animal. You may want to visit the shelter every second or third day to search for your pet. We are required by local ordinance to hold strays for a minimum of 5 days before potentially offering them to the public for adoption.
Search your neighborhood thoroughly, and ask neighbors, mail carriers, bus drivers, and delivery people to keep a watchful eye. Question neighborhood children, people who walk, jog, ride bikes, or have pets of their own and are, therefore, likely to spend more time outdoors. Don’t immediately assume that your pet has traveled far.
Search underneath nearby porches, shrubbery, and other places an animal might hide or become trapped.
Leave fresh food and water outside on a porch or in a sheltered area close to your home. Also set up a large cardboard box or pet carrier lined with an old towel or other items that smell familiar to your pet. If your pet should return while you are asleep or away from home, food and shelter may save its life. This is also an incentive for it to stay close by. Check the box and food supply regularly during quiet evening and early morning hours.
The best time to look for a lost cat is in the dark - between dusk and dawn - when streets are quiet. A lost and hiding cat will come out in the dark to look for food. Take a flashlight with you and search under parked cars, in yards, and under bushes.
Post “LOST” signs in your neighborhood and get permission to post flyers at local veterinary practices, groomers, pet supply stores, and supermarkets. Make them clear and legible, and include the words “LOST DOG” or “LOST CAT” in large letters along with “REWARD” if you’re offering one. Use a recent and clear photo of your pet. Be on the lookout for “FOUND” signs and flyers as well.
Place an ad in the local newspaper. It’s usually free to do so for a number of days. And check the “Found Pets” section daily as well as the Found Pets page of our website.
If your pet has a microchip, call the microchip company to notify them that he is missing and to verify that your contact information is up-to-date.
Be careful. Unfortunately some people will try to take advantage of your emotions. If someone claims to have found your pet, ask them to describe her to you first. Watch out for “red flags”, like requests to wire money or to meet in strange places and/or at unusual hours. If your instincts sense potential trouble, ask to meet in a public place to reclaim your pet and take along your spouse or a good friend.
Remember that your pet needs you. Don’t give up if you don’t find him right away. Pets have been reunited with their families after being lost for days, weeks, and sometimes even months.