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If Your Cat Goes Missing



  • Put out his dirty litter box.

  • Strew some dirty litter around your property.

  • Put a box out with a dirty article of clothing and/or something that smells like the cat.

  • Put out some smelly wet food & some dry food.

  • Put a baby monitor beside the dry food. He'll probably come home at night & you want to hear him.

  • If he has favorite plush toys, put a few outside.

  • Make a flyer with just 3 things.  LOST at the top.  PICTURE in the middle. PHONE NUMBER below picture.  Post them on every 3rd pole, every pole at intersections.  Post them in vets' offices, shops, under windshield wipers.... everywhere.

  • When you search, do so with only two or three people...preferably people who know the cat.  A lot of strangers, or kids making too much noise, will just scare the cat into running farther away. 

  • Do not call him by name. 

  • Go out with a bag treat, make kissy noises & take a flashlight.  Shine the light everywhere.  It will make the cat's eyes glow.

  • Have all neighbors check garages, sheds and under porches. Then check them again. He could be hiding 3 feet from you, but not come because he's too afraid. If there have been sightings of him in another area, ask those neighbors is you can put a trap there. You can buy humane traps at Home Depot, etc. Maybe your borough has one you can borrow

  • You may catch a raccoon or other creature, so be prepared for that. Just open the trap and release. Chances are VERY good that your cat it close by and hiding. Many cats are found trapped in a place that's locked.  Be sure to have your neighbors check any locked areas like basements.  Cats have been found in garage lofts, window wells, basements, etc. Look everywhere multiple times. He could be moving around a little.




 Indoor cats rarely go far...they're too scared.

If Your Dog Goes Missing

  • Put something outside that smells like him ie: bedding, 

  • Put something outside that smells like you ie: dirty t-shirt.

  • Put some food outside.

  • Call all local shelters, police dept, fire dept, and vets' offices.

  • Tell your mailman and all the neighborhood kids.

  • Make a flyer with just 3 things:   LOST (in large print), PICTURE, PHONE NUMBER (in large print).  More detail is fine for posting in stores, or public places, but not for posting on street poles.

  • Staples will make several hundred flyers for about $30. Having them made in black & white is cheaper than color.  Have them laser printed.  Laser printed flyers' ink won't run if it rains.  If you don't laser print, put the flyers in plastic sleeves.  One gallon storage bags are a perfect fit and are cheap at dollar stores,

  • Beginning where your dog was last seen, post flyers on poles.  Post on every other pole, every pole at intersections.  Put them at eye level for drivers.  Do at least a 6-7 block radius.  If you get no calls in the first 24 hours, expand the area.  Dogs can travel much farther than most people realize.

  • Now put flyers under windshield wipers, in stores, churches, all public places. Make wallet sized flyers to pass out to people on the street.  Ask them to put them in their wallets or glove compartments...somewhere easily accessible.

  • Put an ad on Craigslist, local papers, Penny-saver, etc and spread the flyer/information via social media.

  • Join Facebook ..There are many lost dog groups to help you. 

  • When you search take a good, smelly treat with you.  We have found that KFC rotisserie chicken or braunsweiger work best.  Please refer to the files at the top of that group's page.  There are several about lost dog behavior & they will guide you about how to catch him.  There's a very good chance he will run from you.

  • If your dog has a special  'dog friend', take that dog along for the search.  If you can engage his 'friend' in play and make him bark, it may lure your dog back to you.  If he has a favorite squeaky toy, take that with you.  These tactics may only work for the first few days.  After that, your dog will go into survival mode.

  • Do NOT hesitate to ask for advice. 



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