What To Do If Your Pet Goes Missing

The metro area’s population explosion hasn’t been limited to humans. Thousands of pets have come along with their families – some eager, many nervous about starting new lives in unfamiliar territory.

It’s a fact: Pets are less secure and so more apt to become a flight risk when their routines are interrupted, particularly when they are away from familiar surroundings.

If you are among the many pet lovers who have recently put down roots in our community, welcome! And if your cat or dog manages to leave home before you’ve had an opportunity to get her licensed or update her tag, here are some tips to help get her back safely.

First, act fast! Walk or drive around your neighborhood and tell everyone you meet. Be sure to give out your phone/text number. Hang (and date) posters wherever you are permitted. Include your pet’s photo and offer a reward. Utilize social media sites like Nextdoor.com. Broaden your search through Craigslist, Twitter and Facebook.

Next, check the shelter closest to where your pet was lost. Visit in person to file a report and take along a photo. The Denver Animal Shelter is at 1241 W. Bayaud Ave. Their website, which includes lost pet pictures, is denveranimalshelter.org. Reach the shelter by phone via the city call center, 311.

Check outlying shelters too. Find links on the Metro Denver Animal Welfare Alliance website.

On flip side, when you see a stray pet, be a good neighbor and help another’s pet be found. If there are no ID tags, take the animal to the nearest municipal shelter right away. The shelter staff will scan the body for a microchip and provide a safe haven while they work to reunite the people with the owner.

If taking the pet to a shelter is not an option or you want to keep it temporarily at your home, you’ll still want to have her checked for a microchip and file a “found” report with the shelter.

Then, distribute fliers and post a “found pet” notice on Internet sites, but be cautious. Don’t include a photo and be sure to withhold some key information so you can be certain anyone who contacts you is the actual owner.

Additional information is available here.

Written by

Volunteer, foster, and webmaster for Angels With Paws.
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