In the unfortunate event that your pet becomes lost or escapes from your property, quick action is key. Notify your ARR foster or adoption representative IMMEDIATELY via email or phone for assistance. All pet microchips are registered to ARR, and we will be contacted by the microchip company if your pet is found. ARR will send out a blast email to our members and volunteers with your pet’s photo and description.
The following are suggestions to help you locate your lost pet. (Special instructions for lost cats are listed at the bottom of the page.)
Lost Dog Procedures
Notify all local humane societies and shelters immediately. Send them a recent photo of your pet with a detailed description, along with your contact information. Most facilities are very busy, and it can take several days before they realize they have your pet. Colorado State law requires shelters to hold a stray pet for 5 days before putting it up for adoption or euthanizing it. Many times pet owners have called shelters inquiring about their pet and have been told the pet is not there, only to find out later that the pet was indeed at the shelter all along. The best option is to go visit the shelter in person daily to see if your pet is there.
Post flyers in your neighborhood and be sure to go door to door to notify neighbors, nearby businesses, etc. The more eyes looking for your pet, the better.
Make some brightly colored large posters and grab some volunteers to hold posters up at the 4 corners of the nearest busy intersection to where your pet was lost. This is a proven technique that has helped many pets find their way home.
Post a Lost Pet ad on www.petharbor.com, on the Colorado Lost and Found Pets Facebook page, on your own Facebook page, Twitter, and Pinterest. Social media is a big help to spread the word about your lost pet.
Call local veterinarians and give them the same information you provide to the shelters. If your pet is injured or killed, it will most likely end up at a vet clinic or shelter.
Continue searching for your pet by calling its name, walking your neighborhood or area where it was lost, etc. You can set food outside or you can borrow a live trap from your shelter and set it out with your pet’s blanket and food inside. (This might also attract other local pets or wildlife and trap will need to be checked several times daily).
Remember – your pet has a much better chance of being returned to you quickly when it’s wearing a collar with I.D. tags displaying your phone number. Although your pet is microchipped, only a shelter or veterinarian’s office will be able to scan for a chip. An I.D. tag makes it easy for anyone who finds your pet to call you without having to take your pet to a shelter.
Lost Cat Procedures
If your kitty should get lost, follow the same suggestions above but also try these tips:
If you have a garage, leave it open about 6 inches so kitty can take refuge if she’s near the house.
Put out a bed of clothing or a blanket that smells like kitty’s favorite person.
Put the kitty’s litter box outside (or in the garage) so she recognizes her scent.
Leave food and water available at all times.
Set up a live trap if kitty is skittish.
Put up LOTS of fliers in your neighborhood.
Contact 24PetWatch.com or HomeAgain depending on which microchip your kitty has.
Post a missing pet alert to Colorado Lost and Found Pets (FB page), PetHarbor.com, and CraigsList.
Contact your local shelters and vet offices and leave a description and kitty’s microchip number.
Don’t give up hope! We’ve heard stories of kitties coming home days, weeks, and even months later.