Given the opportunity most pets will wander off. Every day gates are left open, fences fall apart, and pets are lost. Losing a family pet can be traumatic, but there are steps you can take to help get your furry friend back home. Don’t assume that your pet will figure out how to get home. The odds of getting your pet back to you decrease the longer you "wait and see."
First make a few phone calls. Call:
- The shelters in your area.
- Your neighbors (or leave them a note).
- The newspaper to place a free lost/found ad in their classified section.
- Radio and television stations to ask them to make an announcement about your pet.
- The city police or county sheriff (depending on where you live). Ask if they’ve found or impounded your animal.
- City or county road department. Ask if they’ve had reports of an animal being hit by a car.
- The local vets. Ask if they’ve treated any injured animals.
In each case, give the people you talk to a detailed description of your pet. Even if you don’t know the breed, describing the color, length of hair, distinguishing markings, and what the tail and ears look like can be a big help in identifying your pet. Bring in a photograph if you have one. Also make sure you provide your name and phone number in case they see your pet later on. You also should put up posters (with a photograph if possible) in the area you lost your pet and on local bulletin boards.
After you get your pet home, take steps to make you don’t lose him or her again. Be sure that your pet is always wearing a collar and identification tag. Also, if you haven’t already done it, get your pet spayed or neutered. Many pets that are wandering are following their raging hormones to the nearest potential mate.