WHEN YOUR DOG IS LOST
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GASP! The dog is gone! Your emotions are ruling. You're in a panic! Please.... .... Don't waste precious time second guessing the "how" or "why" -- but get your search started immediately! The quicker you get moving, the more chance you'll have of finding your dog.
1. ......if at all possible, leave a vehicle open at the exact spot where the dog disappeared. Put some food and water on the floor inside the car ... and something that has your scent on it .. and/or the dog's own scent. Have people stay away from it except for quick checks to see if the dog is curled up sleeping in the back ....
2. Notify all area agencies -
Continue to -CALL AND
VISIT YOUR SHELTERS DAILY!
3. POSTER - FLYERS placed IMMEDIATELY! - be sure to include photo of dog, dog's name breed, sex, color. Note if dog needs meds. MAKE PHONE NUMBERS BIG. Keep your poster SIMPLE ... i.e. do not clutter up flyers and posters with unnecessary information. Make words as large as possible. (Note if using an inkjet printer, the print will run if it gets wet. Use these for inside areas only.)
4. POST FLYERS on telephone poles, in store bulletin boards or windows, school bulletin boards & senior centers (older people KNOW what goes on in towns!). Be sure to hand them out to meter readers, school and commercial bus drivers, mail delivery people, UPS & Fed-Ex drivers, sanitation workers, newspaper delivery people, Dept. of Highways workers, florist delivery people, police and firemen - to anyone who is outside working and may see the dog.
5 Enlist as many people as possible to help search. Children can be a big help and they LOVE to have an important mission! Give them some tempting dog treats to drop on the ground. Emphasize to them: "Do NOT chase". Instruct them to call you or some other adult immediately if they spot the dog.
6 If you have another dog or dogs that are familiar to the lost dog, grab a leash and some water and treats and take that dog along.
7. Provide everyone cell phones and exchange all numbers. (This requires that we all keep our cell phones charged up so they are ready when we need them.)
8. Work in groups of two if possible. It's safer and you'll have someone to circle around if needed.
9. Make sure the telephone numbers provided are covered 24 hours a day.
10. Place ads in newspapers - make it big enough to be easily read.
11. Contact radio and TV stations and ask if they will put the info on the air.
12. Visit schools and ask to place flyers in rooms. If possible talk to the students. (Always report to the office before doing anything on school property.)
13. Place flyers anyplace that has a bulletin board - Walmart usually has bulletin boards at the entry of stores, laundromats, pet supply stores, grocery stores, gasoline stations, etc. Check back often to make sure they have not been covered up or taken down.
14. Don't be hesitate to stop people on the street and tell them about the missing dog, give them a flyer. Do not be afraid to ask for help! Also, when you go into a store to ask to put flyer up (preferably in front window) talk to the manager, explain about the lost dog, look sad - after all, you are. If they put the flyer up, thank them very sincerely. Talk to clerks, and customers if they are not busy. Keep the missing dog in the public's eye. Talk to anyone who will listen!
15. When flyers and posters get torn down, go back and put up new ones immediately.
16. Check with area humane societies and rescue groups about people who might be willing to help search, knock on doors, put up posters, etc.
17. Keep recent photos available. Buy a cheap, one- time use camera if necessary and take a photo of your pet BEFORE he is groomed and then again after his haircut. If your dog got loose today, how much would he resemble that freshly groomed photo? These don't have to be great photos, just a shot of the whole dog. Ask your groomer to help you do a before/after.
18. You don't have a recent photo? or any photo of this dog? That's okay ... just go to the web and find a similar looking dog... the public will not even know it's not the same exact dog. One rainstorm and that poof won't look the same as in the picture anyway.
19. Don't give up ... your fluff needs for you to persevere.
20. Take time to rest .. it'll provide the strength to go on looking.
Copyright Bichon Rescue Tennessee, Inc. 2010