If Your Dog or Cat Goes Missing

The family dog or cat is regarded as a member of the family just as much as any other family member.  When the dog or cat goes missing, it can create a feeling of panic or helplessness as there are not usually any clues left as to where your pet could have gone.  Many pet owners across the country have experienced this helpless feeling and although most pets are found within 24 hours, there are cases in which a cat or dog is missing for weeks or even longer.  If your cat or dog does go missing, do your best to remain calm and follow these procedures to increase your chances of finding your pet.

The first question that comes to a pet owner’s mind when their dog or cat goes missing is why did they run away.  There are several reasons why pets run away and if you can determine the reason, it can greatly help your search.  The most common reasons that a pet might run away include:

  • Curiosity: Some dogs are opportunists and may leave when the situation presents itself to find stimulation. 
  • Mating: Dogs and cats that are not spayed or neutered may run away in search of a mate.
  • Unfamiliarity: When a pet has been relocated to a new home, they may not feel comfortable right away and could leave in search of more comfortable surroundings.
  • Fear: Sometimes something drastic such as a loud noise or traumatizing event could cause a pet to run away out of fear in search of shelter.

Taking these common reasons that cause pets to run away into consideration with the personality of your pet can help you get an idea of why they ran and where they might be.

When trying to determine where your pet could possibly be, it is important to consider their size and fitness level.  If your dog is large, you may need to increase your search area because they can cover more ground than small dogs which are usually found within a one mile radius of the home.  Try making a list of the different areas your pet may have run to considering their size and personality and check them daily.  If your pet has a consistent problem with running away, you might want to consider a microchip.

Another important step to take during your search is to stay in contact with local vets, animal hospitals, and kennels in case someone found your pet and took it to one of these locations.  Make sure to provide a detailed description of your pet along with a picture to help your search effort.  You can also use social media or hang posters around your neighborhood to help raise awareness in your area.  But the most important thing to remember is to stay calm and continue your search daily until your pet is found.  Almost 90 percent of all missing dogs are found.

Providing excellent care and giving them the attention that they need is the best way to prevent your cat or dog from running away.  If your work schedule prevents you from being home often enough to walk or feed your pet, contact The Pet’s Home for our pet sitting and dog walking services.

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