The days surrounding the July 4th holiday are the busiest of the year at our shelters. Losing a beloved pet can be a very scary time. Our friends at Lost Dogs Arizona have done an amazing job creating an action plan for those who have lost a pet. Here are a few of their tips ...
- Place a blanket (that smells familiar to your dog), food, and water outside where your pet was last seen.
- Assign one person to be the point person for communications. Use the same phone number for all your advertisements, social media posts, flyers, etc.
- Gather all current information about your pet (name, tags, current photo, breed, microchip information, etc)
Create Flyers and Posters!
- Submit the form to have your missing pet listed with Helping Lost Pets and posted on Lost Dogs Arizona: http://www.helpinglostpets.com/LDAZ.
- Create posters and flyers to be hung and passed out in your area.
- Look three miles in every direction from where your pet was lost. Assign volunteers to specific areas.
- Volunteers should carry tasty treats, water and a leash.
- Hang posters throughout the area and look for "Found" signs.
- Visit BOTH MC Animal Care Shelters. You may live in the West Valley, but there is a chance your pet was transported to the Mesa shelter if the Phoenix location doesn’t have kennel space.
- Visit the Arizona Humane Society’s Second Chance Hospital (in case your pet was injured and taken there for treatment).
- By law, shelters must hold stray pets over three months of age for 72 hours. After 72 hours, your pet may be adopted out or in some cases, euthanized. Do not wait to look for your missing dog or cat.
- Post your dog to MC Animal Care’s interactive map. You can also check the map for pets that have been found in your area. http://gis.maricopa.gov/mapapp/animalcontrol/stray/index.html.
- Post to Lost Dogs Arizona and Helping Lost Pets: www.helpinglostpets.com/LDAZ.
- Post your lost pet on Craig’s List in both the Community/Pets and Community/Lost & Found sections. Be sure to post a photo.
- Post your pet on www.PetHarbor.com. You can also search shelter pets on this site.
- Monitor MC Animal Care’s lost pet Twitter feed: @NoLostPetsMC
- Post on Facebook pages/groups (Lost Dogs Arizona, Straydar) and NextDoor.com.
Once Your Pet is Home!
- Take him/her to the veterinarian to be checked over.
- Remove all flyers/posters, web postings, etc.
- Make sure your pet is microchipped and wearing tags on a secure collar or harness.
- Update the status of your dog on the Helping Lost Dogs/Lost Dogs Arizona website by changing to "Back Home" at http://helpinglostpets.com/mypets.
Be diligent in your search! We’ve seen many pets come to our shelters months, and even years, after they’ve gone missing.