If your pet goes missing it’s important that you try a variety of methods to get them back home safely and don’t just rely on one method to work. We recommend the following:
Do this now – Check your details are correct
Make sure your contact details are up-to-date on the microchip register and the council’s dog registration database. The vets and the SPCA will scan incoming animals for a microchip and check dog registration tags to get in touch.
Thoroughly check with your neighbours
Knock on doors in your street/neighbourhood and tell them about the animal you’re looking for (give them a flyer as well). Ask them to check their garden sheds and garages or anywhere else that your pet may have decided to hide. Offer to do this yourself if they’re happy for you to – oftentimes an animal will hide from strangers, so they may stay out of sight until they hear a familiar voice.
Create a flyer
Make a flyer with a clear picture and description. Distribute it locally via notice boards, mailboxes, neighbours, community centres, vets and us at the SPCA etc. Visit here for a checklist of what to include on your flyer.
Speak to local vets
Call all local vet clinics and drop in to see them with a flyer – many of them have lost and found boards.
Use social media
Embrace the power of social media to spread the word. There are plenty of lost and found pages on Facebook that can be used. Ask your friends to share your posts as well, this will get them seen by even more people.
Try these pages
Hawke’s Bay Missing, Lost and Found Animals
Anything Animal Hawke’s Bay
New Zealand Lost Pets Register
Rabbit Rescue Hawke’s Bay
Use Trade Me
Look on the Trade Me Lost & Found section to see if anyone is advertising that they have found your pet. Place a ‘lost’ ad using the details from your flyer.
Contact the Council
If your dog has been found stray or wandering then it may have been impounded. Contact the council for more details. You may also want to visit your local council animal shelter with a flyer to put on their lost board.
Check your old house
If you’ve recently moved house then your pet might have tried to find their way ‘home’. Talk to the new occupants and your old neighbours, give them a flyer and ask them to check garden sheds, garages etc. It’s surprising how far animals will travel, so even if you’ve moved a considerable distance, give it a try.
Use familiar sounds and smells
Go out around your neighbourhood at night, when it’s quiet, and call your animal. Shaking biscuits or treats can help as well. Take along an item of yours to help them identify a familiar scent, and try leaving items out around the place, to help guid them home.
Don’t give up
It’s important to keep trying to look for your lost pet. Animals (especially cats) can often go missing for a number of days or even weeks before they show up again out of the blue.