Porky & Buddy Pet Health: Help Finding A Lost Pet

Dear Porky & Buddy,
Help!   My little Schnauzer, Mini, was out for a walk for me when a car nearby backfired I guess and she panicked and bolted off into the woods.

I called and called to try to get her to come back but there is no sign of her.

What should I do?


Dear Joan,
The short answer?  Look and look and look and look!

The long answer?  Some ways of looking work better than others. The ASPCA recently surveyed more than 1,000 households with pets across the country to find out if they had lost a dog or cat in the past five years, and if they did, did they find that pet and where did they look?

Of the pet owners surveyed, 15 percent had lost a dog or a cat in the past five years, (so you are not alone), and 85 percent of those lost dogs and cats were recovered, (so there is a lot of hope).

They found that the following steps are key to finding a lost pet:

Search immediately when you know your  pet is lost;
Search in your own neighborhood first through visual searches as well as posters and online; and
Check local shelters from the first day your pet is lost.

It looks like you have already started the process, so that’s a good thing.

Depending on the kind of neighborhood where you live, you want to just fan out in all directions checking with everyone, and especially the local kids who are home now in the summer and outside a lot.

Take a minute first to create a poster of Mini.  We hope you have a digital photo of her. Make the photo as big as possible so people can see it and make the words LOST and REWARD as big as possible so people can see them easily and pay attention.

Just a small reward is enough.  Most people probably won’t even take it, but it will get them to look.  The only other information the poster really needs is your phone number.

Put the poster everywhere you can think of, the local post office, the grocery store, your town hall, veterinarians’ offices,  wherever people are congregating where they might see it.

Call your DCO to let her or him know.

You can find the contact information from your town hall or on the Humane Society’s website at www.oswegohumane.org

If you have a local shelter where you live, call the shelter, go there to look and take a copy of the poster to them and keep calling every day to check.

Depending on the size and staffing of the shelter, you can’t assume that they will have the time and resources to track you down, so check every day yourself.

Post Mini in the lost pet section of Craigslist, and on any other online lost pet services that you can find. Check with all of your local papers and television stations to see what they offer for such listings. Many are free.

Make sure you leave a few objects with your scent on them out in your yard.  Mini finds her way around mostly by scent and that may help her find her way back.

The main thing to remember is DON’T GIVE UP!

She is looking for you as hard as you are looking for her, but she is lost and confused and probably still scared, so just keep looking and looking and looking and looking.

If we had fingers, we would keep them crossed for you and Mini.

And after you find her, you can celebrate by coming to  the 12th Annual Chasing & Fetching Balls (a/k/a Golf) Tournament is on July 23 starting at 1 p.m. at Beaver Meadows Golf Club in Phoenix. Captain and Crew, 18 holes with a cart,  lunch at the club house at noon, beverages on the course, raffles, games, prizes, a chicken buffet dinner and a fabulous auction. For more details and to sign up go to www.oswegohumane.org

The Oswego County Humane Society provides spay/neuter assistance, information and referral, adoption assistance to pet owners, humane education programs, foster care and adoption  for pets in urgent need, assistance with lost and found pets.

Our administrative offices and spay/neuter clinic are located at 265 W. First St., Oswego, NY. Check our web site at www.oswegohumane.org or call (315) 207-1070 for more information or to be placed on our mailing list for our newsletter.

Because People & Pets Are Good for Each Other.