What happens if you lose your dog?

1st May 2013

Dogs can go missing for all sorts of reasons, and it is not necessarily the fault of the owner. Even well behaved, obedient dogs can sometimes bolt, become lost, or sadly become stolen, causing a lot of distress to the owner.

Read our seven simple steps for what to do next…

  1. If your dog is microchipped, inform your microchip database provider as soon as possible and check they have your correct contact details on record. You can either do this on-line or over the telephone.
  2. If your dog went missing from home, thoroughly check your own property first. Look in all your pet’s favourite places and then get down on their level and check other potential hidey holes. These may include: rooms that are usually kept closed, the garden shed, the garage, in the wardrobe or under the bed.
  3. Ask your immediate neighbours to check their gardens and out buildings and anywhere else they may have left a door open for your pet to sneak in.
  4. The next step is to search the rest of your neighbourhood as soon as you can. Tell as many people as possible and take a photo of your dog with you to show everyone you speak to. Leave your contact details with anyone you talk to. Remember, people like postal workers and police community support officers often do a lot of local walking around, so make an extra effort to tell them if you spot them whilst doing your rounds.
  5. If your dog went missing on a walk, do a similar pattern of searching but in the area the dog went missing. Take your dog’s lead, favourite treats and favourite toy with you. Dogs have a remarkable sense of smell and scents like these can help them to find you again. If you were walking within a few miles of your home, try and get someone else to check back at your house whilst you keep looking locally, as many dogs will try to make their own way home if they go missing.
  6. If you haven’t found your dog within a few hours, the next step is to phone local vets, animal wardens and animal welfare centres. Leave a description of your dog with them as well as your contact number (a mobile phone number is usually best). If possible, have someone else do this step for you whilst you continue to search for your pet.
  7. If you still have no luck in finding your dog, now is the time to think about putting up missing pet posters in local areas. The best ones have are cent, clear, colour photo of your pet on, as well as your contact details. You may even want to contact your local radio station and newspaper, as well as any lost and found pet websites to see if they will advertise your missing pet for you.

Above all and throughout your search, it is important to try and keep calm, even though the situation will undoubtedly be very stressful for you. You will be able to think more clearly when calm and a logical mind-set will definitely enable you to more effectively track down your missing dog. Good luck!

Did you know?

22% of stray dogs reunited with their owners last year were microchipped! The most successful method was by owners directly contacting their local authority or pound (28%)*

Found a lost dog?

  • Check to see if the dog has a collar with some identification on
  • Call the local authority straight away and arrange collection of the dog (this is a legal requirement)
  • The local authority kennel will then scan the dog and check for any microchip information

*Source – Dogs Trust stray dogs survey 2012 www.dogstrust.org.uk

Category: Blog