You see a pet roaming around your neighborhood or place of business or on the side of a road -- with no owner in sight. The animal lover in you can't bear to walk or drive away. Don't fret. There are things you can do to help a poor lost pet find his/her way back home.
How to Help a Lost Pet
- Approaching a stray pet. Remember, safety first. Consider the safety of yourself, the stray pet and other people. Be aware of traffic conditions and the animal's condition and behavior. Stray pets, especially injured ones, are typically frightened and may act out aggressively.
- Before approaching a stray pet, assess their behavior. Approach the pet gently and cautiously while talking in a calm voice. You can use food to entice an animal to approach you. If the pet acts aggressive, you may need to call for back-up or animal services.
- Once you've determined if it is safe to do so, try to catch the animal and restrain it with a leash. A belt or a piece of rope may be used in case of an emergency. Stray cats and small dogs are best confined in a carrier or a secure box with air holes.
- If a stray pet is injured, you need to be extra cautious as they may feel extremely vulnerable when approached. You must be prepared to cover vet costs when you choose to help an injured stray.
- Check for ID. Once you've captured the stray pet, check for an identification tag. If the pet is not wearing an ID tag, you can take the pet to your local animal shelter or to MHC's Enhanced Adoption Center to have them scanned for a microchip. Doing so would give you the pet owner's contact information.
- Determine what you want to do with the pet. If you were unsuccessful in locating the owners through an ID tag or microchip you have two options:
- Foster the pet. Keep the pet in your care and keep trying to locate the owners.
- Call Animal Services. If you cannot or are not willing to catch the stray pet yourself, call Midland Animal Services. Give as much information about the location and description of the stray pet as possible.
Taking the Stray Pet into your Home
If you've decided to keep the pet under your care until you find the owner - thank you for helping a pet out and possibly saving his/her life. Here are some things you might consider doing:
- Bring the stray pet to the vet. The vet could help treat any injuries/diseases and ensure that the pet you've taken in has all the necessary vaccinations. You want to be sure that the pet is healthy and fit to be in your household and is free of any contagious illness. Be aware that you will be responsible for these costs.
- Spread the word about the stray pet. Let people know you've found a pet and are looking for the owners.
- Take a good, clear photo of the pet. A photo will be extremely useful in your search for the stray pet's owners.
- Post the found pet on the internet - Craigslist, nextdoor.com, petkey.org, lostmydoggie.com, petfinder.com, missingpet.net, thecenterforlostpets.com, lostandfound.com, fidofinder.com, pawboost.com, petamberalert.com, bestfriends.com, and more.
- Post it on Social Media. Social media expands your network in and around the community so that you will have a greater chance of finding the pet's owner. You can post the pet's picture on a social media page for lost & found pets. Include a description of the pet and where you saw it to help out owners who are searching for their pet. Here are some local Facebook Pages where you can post lost & found pets:
- Ector County Trading Post
- Furry Friends Have Feelings Too
- Lost & Found Dogs, Cats and Other Pets of Midland, TX
- MASA - Midland Animal Shelter Adoptables
- Midland County Trading Post
- Midland County Trading Post
- Midland/Odessa Permian Trading Post
- Midland/Odessa Texas Lost And Found Pets
- Midland Trading Post
- Midland Trading Post
- Midland TX Rescue Dogs
- Midland Tx, Trading Post
- MOBS Midland, Odessa, Big Spring - Lost and Found Pets
- Pets Around Midland TX
- Show Me Your Pitties
- SHOW ME YOUR PITTIES....Animal Lovers United of the Permian Basin
- Speaking Up for Those Who Can’t
- The Whatever Trading Post In Odessa/Midland Texas
- West Texas Animal Advocates
- West Texas Dog Lovers
- West Texas Man Cave
- West Texas Pet Detectives
Can't find the stray pet's owners?
It might simply be a case of bad luck (owners not seeing your online posts or posters). Or, unfortunately, you might have come across an abandoned pet. Sometimes irresponsible pet owners decide to let go of their pet in the worst possible manner - abandonment. We've seen these disheartening scenarios -- entire litters of puppies or kittens in garbage bins, a dog wandering in the middle of the desert or on an empty field, or scavenging for food in your neighborhood for months. These pets were deliberately left by their owners knowing that death will be the most likely end-result.
The good thing is -- it does not have to be. Thanks to the kindness of Good Samaritans like you, found pets could have a second chance in life. All you need to do is continue to foster the pet/s until you can find them new homes.
Please proceed to the page on Re-homing a Pet for help on getting started.
Do you have any more questions?
We will be happy to answer your questions! Please don't hesitate to reach out to us. For your convenience, here is our Contact Form.