For emergencies $150 in advance by Pay Pal for the first 24 hours.
After that, $100 for subsequent 24 hrs.
a. Time is of the essence – Unfortunately, the longer your pet is missing, the less likely your chances of recovering your pet. Many of the tips are most useful if executed immediately after your pet has gone missing.
By taking a few moments NOW, to put together your own “Lost Pet” package for each of your pets, you will be ready to start getting the word out about your pet’s disappearance. Hand out the flier to everyone you see in the area your pet was last seen. You never know who may be able to help you, so talk to everyone!
b. Contact the microchip company – Alert the microchip company immediately, so they can start alerting their network. If you have registered your pet’s number with more than one company, be sure to alert them all!
c. Enlist the help of friends & family – There truly is strength in numbers! You can’t be everywhere, so getting help is so important!
If you are missing your cat, make sure you check in every nook & cranny in your home! Cat’s have been known to get themselves wedged it the smallest of spaces or locked in closets and basements. Expand your search to under porches, neighbor’s sheds, garages, etc…..
While you are out in the area where you pet was last scene, you can have friends/family handing out fliers to people in the local area, visiting police stations, shelters and vets.
d. Post fliers everywhere – the bigger/brighter the better! - I cannot stress this enough! Telephone Poles, supermarkets, post offices, banks, pet stores, groomers, gas stations, restaurants, etc….any store window you can find! Be sure to check back often to see if the poster is missing or damaged.
Make sure you leave enough posters so all carriers & patrolmen can get a copy. It does not hurt to follow up with calls after shift changes to make sure the new dispatcher is aware of you missing pet.
Stop patrolmen, delivery people, postal workers, landscapers, public works people on the street and make sure they have a copy of your flier!
Go door to door and talk to people. Many people have pets and understand what you are going through. You will find many to be sympathetic and want to help.
The biggest thing is to be in the area all the time giving out posters and searching. If the community sees you care, then they will care too. Talk to people and ask questions. Tell people, report it to as many relevant organizations as possible and constantly call them to check updates. Get it in the paper, put flyers EVERYWHERE. The more people who know who your dog is and what he looks like, the more chances you will have of someone spotting him and calling you or picking him up.
You will be amazed at how much support you will get from the community. People will come out of the woodwork to help you and to look for the dog on their own, whether you are aware of it or not.
There will be times when you feel like you are getting somewhere...and there will be times when you'll feel like you are looking for a needle in a haystack. Anything you do is a step in the right direction. Your pet is a family member. Don't give up.
e. Enlist the help of a 4 legged buddy –
While a dog may be too scared to come out around strange people, they maybe more inclined to come out around a familiar dog pal. Bringing a 4 legged buddy can be very helpful! If you don’t have a 4 legged buddy, bringing your pets favorite squeaky toy so he/she can hear a familiar “happy” sound, can help bring him/her out if hiding in the bushes.
f. Spread the word online – If you belong to any local newsgroups, post a message that your pet is lost. Chances are that others on the local list will forward your message and help spread the word about your pet.
Send an email to all your friends and ask them to forward it on to anyone in the area. You can place a free classified on www.PetFinder.com .
g. Online lost/found – There are websites like www.findtoto.com or www.SherlockBones.com , which are pay services for automated calls to neighbors in the area where your pet was last scene. They make automated calls, giving your lost dog or lost cat message describing your pet in detail, including your contact number, and our website address where the recipient can go to view your lost pet's picture and information. If you have a cat, you can try www.TabbyTracker.com.
There is another site called www.fidofinder.com. I have not used this site, but have listed it in case it could be helpful.
www.missingpetpartnership.org - Missing Pet Partnership is a national, nonprofit organization dedicated to reuniting lost companion animals with their owners/guardians. There website offers behavior-based lost pet recovery tips and referrals to lost pet services.
You can also post on Petfinder.com, Craigslist, yahoo groups like “K9AmberAlert”.
h. Personally visit local shelters, DAILY if possible –
Calling shelters is not always enough. Many times, shelter worker may not know the difference between breeds/colors.
Find out the holding period of each animal control and humane shelter. Be aware of how much time you have to claim your pet before it is euthanized! There have been many stories of a pet being euthanized or adopted out, even though the pet owner had called the shelter about the missing pet.
Make sure you leave a copy of your pets lost poster. Make friends with the shelter folks so they all know you are looking for your pet.
i. Ask Animal Control, humane societies, and shelters about pet rescue organizations in your area.
Usually there are smaller pet rescue groups that work with the local humane shelter. They often take pets from the shelter to save them from euthanasia and adopt them out to new homes. Call the rescue groups regularly to see if they have your pet.
j. Contact Breed Specific Rescues – These rescues may not be local, but pull dogs from shelters if they find out about them. So if you are missing your Great Dane, be sure to contact all the Great Dane or Large Breed Rescues in your state.
k. Check out all the local papers for Found Pets and place a Lost Pet classified
Believe it or not, not everyone uses the Internet on a regular basis. With consolidation in the newspaper industry, sometimes one paper owns many of the smaller papers and shares a single call center for classifieds. Rather than picking up every paper, a single call to the call center can check a number of publications classifieds in a single call.
l. Dogs tend to move in the early mornings (5am-7am) or at dusk. Be sure you are out looking during those time frames.
m. If in an unfamiliar area, get a few local maps- This is helpful to get familiar with the layout, as well as giving you the ability to divide the search area up into sections between all your helpers.
What to do once you have a sighting
a. Get the Pet Owner to that spot - Once you have a spotting, let the owner go to that spot, all others create a wide circle around that area but let the owner quietly call. Bring a familiar 4 legged friend if possible.
b. Gather up the clothes in your hamper – At dusk, leave a crate with some of your dirty clothes and some food/water. Leave more clothes around creating a scent trail back to the crate.
c. Get permission when entering private property - Once the dog is sighted, if it happens on private property be SURE to ask permission of the owner to go onto the property and let him/her know with how many people will be involved. Be sure to be polite and respectful.
A Few Words of Caution
Unfortunately, there are dangerous people in our society who prey upon victims by using "found" pets as a ploy.
• NEVER respond to a "found" pet contact alone. Take a friend or two along with you.
• Arrange to meet in a public place.
• NEVER invite the person to your home unless you happen to know them well.
Beware of money scams. A common one is a person calls you claiming to be a long-haul trucker. He says he picked up your pet and is out of state now. He heard about your ad, flyer, etc. and says he will return your pet if you will pay to ship it home. This person does not have your pet; he is only trying to take your money.
Don't wander around looking for your pet alone, either during the day or at night. Always bring a friend or relative. This is especially important in unfamiliar neighborhoods.
Use the identifying information you have withheld about your pet. Please remember that you should never give out all of the identifying features of your lost pet. If the person who claims to have found your pet cannot describe these features to you, they do not have your pet!
Author is unknown to me (Betty), but I thank him/her for invaluable information.