10 Things to Do When a Pet Goes Missing

Copyright 2014 by R.A. Robbins
Copyright 2014 by R.A. Robbins

Pets often become family.  When a beloved pet goes missing it isn’t always easy to know what to do first.  These are a few things we learned when Callie recently went missing.

  1. Panic for exactly three minutes, then get moving. You have work to do.
  2. Check the obvious places first – house, yard, favorite hiding places.
  3. If you pet is micro-chipped contact the registration company and follow instructions.
  4. Create and print out a poster. Use a current photo and print in color.  Distribute to vet offices (including your pet’s vet) and shelters.  Put them up in your neighborhood.
  5. Start your search where the animal was last seen and work out. Talk to people. Knock on doors. Don’t wait for people to call.
  6. Don’t forget to search early morning and late evening. A pet hiding during the day may come out when things are quieter.  Search on foot, especially where there has been a sighting.
  7. Go searching prepared to find your pet. Take a leash, carrier or whatever might be needed to control the animal. A favorite blanket, toy or treats can also be helpful.
  8. When found, check your pet for obvious signs of physical trauma. Seek immediate veterinary care for serious injuries.
  9. Encourage your pet to drink. He or she may be dehydrated. Add water to food if needed.
  10. A stressed or traumatized pet (especially a cat) will take time to recover. She might take time just to stop shaking. Follow the animal’s lead in what they need or want to recover. If your pet just wants to be held hold her. Show lots of love, be patient and give things time.

Anyone have any tips to add to this list?

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