When Your Pet is Missing
It can happen.
Someone leaves a gate open or that hole under the fence you’ve been meaning to fix was just big enough for your dog to limbo under. It can happen while on vacation or when spending time in the outdoors… Bottom line: accidents happen, and when your pet goes missing it is hard not to panic.
Getting the Word Out When Your Pet is Missing
After searching the most obvious places, such as a closet in the home (where your cat loves to hide) or in the neighbor’s yard, your search is more likely to be successful when you act quickly.
Here are some actions to take to help return your pet home safe and sound.
- Ask friends and family to help scour the neighborhood for your pet, going door to door to inquire with everyone in the surrounding area.
- While they are looking, contact Animal Services Division, your veterinarian, local veterinary clinics, surrounding pet supply stores, and your local law enforcement precinct to file a missing pet report and to alert them to your missing pet.
- Make posters and flyers with recent pictures of your pet, a description and his or her name, when and where he or she went missing, and your contact information. Ask everyone you know to hand these out and post them around the neighborhood, at grocery stories, and local parks.
- It often helps to offer a reward, but make sure you leave out certain details about your pet and quiz callers to make certain you aren’t being scammed.
- Leave a carrier with the flyer you have created, a favorite blanket, and an item of clothing that belongs to you, as well as food and water, in the area your pet was last seen (since this may entice him back). Check the location several times a day.
- Post your flyer or information on local missing pet web pages, such as Craigslist, LostMyDoggie, local newspapers, and community Facebook pages (and ask friends to share your post with their social network).
- Post to Our Facebook Page with a picture of your dog and any relevant contact information. We’ll share the post, and get the word out to all of our followers.
- If your pet is microchipped, contact the manufacturer to inform them that your pet is missing.
- Continue to update your social media and Craigslist “lost pet” post and visit local shelters each day to see if your pet has been turned in.
Don’t Lose Hope
After a few days or weeks go by, it is easy to feel helpless or even to lose hope. But, many pets find their way back to their owners weeks, months, and even years after becoming lost. Stay vigilant and continue to search. Consider searching outside of where you might imagine your pet to be, since some pets have been known to wander miles away from their neighborhoods.
Lost Pet Prevention
We hope all of you reading this blog post are never in a frightening situation such as this. However, as we cannot state enough: accidents happen and pets get loose.
If you have not had your pet microchipped, please do so as soon as possible. If you are unsure what contact information is on file with the microchip manufacturer, call them and make a note to check its accuracy each year. And, be certain to maintain your pet’s license and identification tags.
Other tips to prevent a pet escape can be found on our previous blog post, Dog on the Run: Dealing with Pets Who Like to Escape. Even if your pet isn’t an escape artist, there are some tips to preventing your best friend from becoming a lost pet.
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Schertz Animal Hospital
Since 1976, Schertz Animal Hospital has offered the greater San Antonio area outstanding pet care. Our state-of-the-art animal hospital in Schertz, TX compliments our stress-free handling and experienced veterinary staff. Make an appointment online or give us a call at (210) 659-0345 today!