If your pet is lost, it is very important to act immediately to help ensure that you find them. Many people do not realize that the holding periods at Animal Control facilities are very limited. Animals without collars may be held for as little as five days. This is a problem caused by the actions of people and not a fault of Animal Control Officers. These groups are required to take in animals and, thus, must have open runs. Claiming your pet quickly may save another animals life!
HERE ARE SOME HINTS TO HELP YOU FIND YOUR PET:
Immediately knock at your neighbor’s doors, they may have seen your pet. Who cares if you don’t talk to your neighbors… this is your pet! Maybe then you might also get to know your neighbor.
IS YOUR PET MICRO-CHIPPED? Yes? Call the maker of the chip and register the animal LOST! Keep your pet’s microchip number available. Make an entry in your cell phone in your pet’s name and put the microchip makers contact number for a phone number. Add the animal’s chip number into the contact as well. HSCC animals have HomeAgain chips so the entry might be “Fluffy” “1-888-HomeAgain” “123 123 123 123 123”. This allows you to pull out your phone and make contact immediately.
Put up LOST posters within a hour, a simple poster in BOLD WORDS !!! For example: LOST DOG and a phone number in print big enough so that someone driving past can write down a phone number, without even leaving their car. If you can add a picture that will help as well.
WHICH shelter or animal control facility your pet will be taken to depends on what city or county in which they were found. Check ALL local facilities for you animal. In Campbell County, we have animals from neighboring communities turn up in our facility all the time! If you live within 10 miles of a bordering jurisdiction, contact them. Contact the Animal Control and Humane Society for each area. A list of area groups and their contact info is listed under our “Fun & Useful Resources” tab above.
Use Facebook? Post your missing pet on our Facebook page at “HumaneCampbell”. This is better than your page in a particular way. Your page lets your aunt in Idaho know your dog is gone. Our page lets thousands of animal lovers in the area know your dog is gone. Small, but very important, difference.
Most local shelters, humane societies and animal rescue groups in our area now have websites where they post pictures and descriptions of stray animals in their possession. You can view these animals by going to the following website: www.petfinder.com. Under the Quick Pet Search column on the left, under ANIMAL select dog or cat and then under ZIP or CITY, STATE/PROV type the zip code in which you pet was last seen. This will pull up all posted dogs (or cats) from organizations nearest to that zip code. CHECK EVERY DAY because animals are added almost every day.
Though many of the stray animals in our community have their pictures and descriptions listed on the shelter and humane society websites, not every animal is listed. These facilities have animals come in EVERY DAY and the photography and posting of animals may be several days behind intake. Therefore, it is a very good idea to PHYSICALLY GO to all the nearby shelters and animal control facilities. DO NOT rely on an answer over the phone. Your pet may still be on the road with an Officer and not be brought in until several hours later. Also, verbal descriptions of your “black male lab mix” may be very similar to many other dogs being held at the facility. Nothing can take the place of you looking at the animals being held. Keep checking back… some animals are stray for days or weeks before coming into the shelter or animal control facility.
Check your local newspaper… found ads are FREE and members of the public may have found your animal and not want to turn it into a shelter or animal control facility for fear it will be put to sleep.
Place an ad in the local paper… LOST ads are FREE. Make sure you ad states dog or cat, breed, sex, size and coloring as well as a way to contact you. Here are the names and numbers of local newspapers who allow free lost pet ads:
When you find your animal, please get a collar with ID TAG that includes your telephone number including area code. Also, get your pet micro-chipped! This will ensure that your pet will never have to spend a scary night at a shelter or animal control facility.
Lastly, let the groups you notified know if you find your pet. Less than 1% of people who lose a pet call back when it is found. This creates an enormous list of lost animals that is very hard to match to incoming animals and, in turn, reduces the chances of an animal being identified. Don’t forget to let the micro-chip company know as well.