Lost & Found
That moment when you realize your pet isn't where he/she is supposed to be or has broken loose from you on a joyride. Our hearts break in these moments, and we don't always know what to do next.
An ounce of prevention...
There are a number of steps we can take as pet owners before we find ourself searching for our pets. Steps that reduce the likelihood of thier straying and steps that can speed their way back home to us.
"Fixing" our pets will go a long way toward reducing their wanderlust. See spay/neuter FAQ.
Contain & Control
Fences and gates are our best allies in protecting pets. But, we have to keep them well-maintained and know our little Houdinis. Does yours dig, climb, and/or jump? Add extra barriers to match his/her particular skills. And when it comes to front doors, screens and gates help contain our little sprinters.
*Electric fences work for some dogs but certainly not for all.
Out in the world, our best friends are leashes. Even if we "know" our pets will stay by our sides, we cannot predict what might happen once away from home. Instinct can kick in, and suddenly a dog is chasing a squirrel out of earshot. A loud sound can send him/her flying. Who knows.
Even as strong proponents of microchips for all pets, when it comes to getting a lost pet home quickly and safely, owners should consider the chip to be ID of last resort. The first line of attack is a sturdy collar with ID - whether a plate on the collar, permanent marker, a decorative tag, a license tag, a rabies tag, or one with microchip information. The key is to have readily accessible CURRENT information available to the person who finds the pet including:
Pet name or ID number
Owner name, veterinarian, and/or microchip company
Reuniting with a pet
Time is valuable once our pet is out of sight.
The first step is canvasing the neighborhood and checking with neighbors. Putting food out might attract him/her enough to slow down.
Report, Post & Share
Post the loss widely using posters, online sites (look to the right), the local newspaper and radio stations, as well as local rescues and veterinarians. Finally...
The best thing we can do when we have lost a pet is to GO TO THE CITY SHELTER - daily if possible. Only there can we you be certain to see ALL they have on site. Calling isn't enough.
Scour the Web
HERE to search animals up for adoption
HERE for animals that have been found and are waiting in a neighbor's home
Then check other sites such as:
For more ideas on reuniting with a pet, contact us at
or 812.333.MCHA (6242).
We wish you all the best.