Those of us who have had the pleasure of living with animals know how stimulating and comforting their presence can be. When they wake us up in the morning licking their noses, they greet us enthusiastically when we get home from work, hear us speak with the most understanding but confusing facial expression: everything about them is beautifully integrated into our lives.

So when one day your beloved pet disappears, unfortunately, your whole world turns upside down. We generally see pet parents who lose their pets and have no idea how to find them.

If your dog disappears from home or has broken up with you outdoors, it can be a very stressful experience. In this case, it is important to have an action plan. Follow these steps as soon as you discover that your cat, dog, or other pet companion is missing.

Here are some important things to do once you realize your pet is missing:

  1.  Thoroughly explore the area where your pet was last seen. Show people photos and ask if they’ve seen you anywhere in the area.
  2. If there is a market nearby, ask merchants, fruit and vegetable vendors, and meat shops if there are any. Leave your contact information with everyone and ask them to call if they discover the missing pet or something.
  3. Send an FIR (First Incident Report) to the nearest police station and provide a detailed description of your pet’s name, age, color, breed, temperament, neck color, and the last time it was seen, along with a photo.
  4.  Select a good, clear, and clear photo of your pet to create a brochure with all the relevant details:
  • “LOST DOG” you have to write clearly and largely above the photo,
  • the name of the pet,
  • its address and contact number
  •  Where it was last seen
  •  Date and time since it disappeared
  • The return reward (optional)

Post this template to all social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., and send emails to everyone on your contact list. Share it online with animal welfare and support groups because then you will have the help of all the animal lovers in your area. Ask all family members, friends, and acquaintances to also share this information on social media with everyone they know.

Here you can get some tips on how to find your missing dog in India:

1) Set up flyers and advertising 

“Lost dog” post — Image by © Vstock LLC/Tetra Images/Corbis

It may be very easy, but you want to make sure you’ve done it right. If you think steering wheels are too old-fashioned to work, think again. These work if you use them correctly. You are searching for two things: for people to recognize your dog when they see it and for your flyers to be seen by the right people. Make sure you print a good number of flyers, at least 100, so you don’t have to waste time reprinting.

The best way you need to to use very large fonts and bright colors. Place your flyers at eye level in well-lit areas. If your dog has run away before, you can also go to the area where you were found again

2) Using social media

Social media is known as the most powerful tool to reach people. The most significant thing to get success is reaching the right people at the right time. Post that you have lost your dog in your own profiles and add as much information as possible. You have to use the most popular hashtags and images like #goldenretriever #lostdog #pittsburgh #centralpark. Ask your friends to share the post. Local groups can also be a good place to spread the word.

3) Check with local vets 

Some people may take a lost dog to their local veterinarian or report it there. And many dog owners will come here. If you call every vet in the area, at least you’ll know if they’ve heard or seen anything. However, it is best to ask them to print out a copy of your brochure and hang it in the waiting room. You may need to insist a little here and really emphasize how much you want your dog back. If you succeed, you’ll have another great way to reach out to animal-conscious people.

4) Get in touch with your neighbors

Most dogs are in the area where they got lost. Therefore, by alerting people in this area, you greatly increase their chances. And the most universal way to reach people is still on the phone. The first thing you need to do is call everyone you have as a contact. But you probably don’t have all the neighbors as a contact. So it’s a little harder to get further. One option is to use a reverse address lookup. This allows you to find the phone numbers of people who live at specific addresses. However, you must pay to get the information. Spokeo charges $0.95 per number, so it can get expensive quickly.

5) Narrow the search area 

You have probably already searched for your dog and noticed how long it takes to cover an area. Therefore, it is extremely effective to cross out areas. Some things you can keep in mind and ask yourself: how did I find my dog and has my dog been lost before? What things attract my dog? Are there other dogs you like to spend time with? Once you write down some of these things, you’ll get a better idea of where to look. It may be helpful to create a paper map and decide which areas your dog is most likely to avoid.

6) Look at the right time

When dogs are alone, their natural instincts return and make them more active at dusk and dawn. Look in the most likely places during these times. Make sure you bring a powerful flashlight. You can illuminate a much larger area and spot a dog by using a good flashlight. It also helps you move outdoors and protect yourself from tripping over things.

7) Don’t chase your dog

If you find your dog but it is moving away, don’t run or walk in pursuit! It’s very counterintuitive but very important! When a dog is lost for 24 hours and is alone, it can become stressed and anxious. The dog just wants to be safe and avoid anything that is scary from a distance. That doesn’t mean the dog hates you. When you hunt the dog, you can easily scare it. Some dogs are so traumatized that they don’t want to return to humans at all.

8. Visit every shelter every day

Shelters can assure you that they will notify you when your pet arrives, but don’t count on it. Shelters remain always busy and workers do not make a connection between found animals that give up and their lost animals. Ask about the lost and found records of the shelters. Be persistent but courteous and don’t give up. Your companion is counting on you to make progress when it really matters.

Finishing Lines

If your pet is familiar with the sound of a particular squeaky toy or the rattling of a box of chewy sticks, take it in your search and make a sound while you shout its name. This can make it easier to be detected from a distance. Be strong and calm. While it’s an extremely difficult experience for you, it’s more important to get the message across clearly to each person you’re talking to.

Take a deep breath focus and focus on the task at hand. Always be positive and do not give up the search too soon, sometimes pets are found after many days, even weeks or months. Trust that you will surely be reunited with your loving companion when you take all measures to spread the word.


Further Reading: 

  1. Karin TarQwyn, How to Find a Lost Dog: The Pet Owner’s Guide Kindle Edition
  2. Amy Mall, Dog Gone Missing: Why Dogs Go Missing and How to Find Them Kindle Edition


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