It doesn’t happen often but when your dog does bolt or run away, you can’t help but get that sinking feeling in your stomach when it happens. While it is important to take all precautions to ensure that your dog doesn’t run away, sometimes situations occur that are out of your control. This article covers some logical steps you can take to find them.
Step One: Begin Your Search In Your Neighborhood
No matter how strong or fast a dog may be, they rarely continue running in a straight line. For this reason, lost dogs are usually found within a 2 mile radius of their home. So begin searching for your dog by combing through neighborhoods near your house. Check along some of the routes you take your dog on walks on because dogs tend to follow familiar scents and re-mark their territory.
Step Two: Check Local Shelters, Vets and Even Pet Shops & Groomers
In many cases, if a person sees a domestic looking dog roaming the streets, they will likely pick them up and take them to the local vet, animal hospital, pet groomers or shelter. Call and check these locations in your area first and leave them a contact number so they know where to reach you. Also, leave a flyer with your dog’s photograph and description so that workers and volunteers know exactly what to look for.
Step Three: Make a List of Locations Your Dog Enjoys Going To
Take a moment and think where your dog might run to find company and comfort. Is there a family member close by who often gives your dog treats? Do you have a neighbor that your dog enjoys playing with? Is there a dog park near your home that your dog enjoys playing in? Go through all these locations in your mind. Make sure to check and double check your backyard and home (between bushes, underneath porches etc). Sometimes, if a dog is scared or spooked, he may burrow himself somewhere quiet and cool right near your home.
Step Four: Get Your Community Involved in Spreading the Word
Remember, the first 24 hours are critical in finding your dog. So, within the first day, rally your local friends and family and have them join in the search. Let them know your dog is missing and have them check the locations you think you dog will likely be. Then, have them help put up signs around the neighborhood. Some great places to post these signs are at the entrances and exits to parks your dog frequents, intersections controlled by traffic lights, entrances to grocery stores, and near school bus stops so both parents and children will see it. Getting your community involved will ensure that there are more eyes around town keeping a look out for your dog. Have your new team call local shelters and animal hospitals so that if any animals are brought in that fit your dog’s description, they can contact you right away.
Step Five: Bring your Pets Favorite Toys and Treats with you as you Search
While you’re out looking for your dog, bring a toy that makes a familiar sound or a treat that your dog loves. This may bring him running back to you. Also, when you find him, he might be a little nervous and stressed, these things will calm him down and decrease anxiety. Put the dog’s bed filled with toys or food outside of the home, doing so will make it more likely that your dog can sniff his way back home.
Having a dog that constantly bolts and runs away can be frustrating and exhausting. It can be a worrisome situation but the steps listed above can definitely help you logically track down your dog and make sure he’s safe and sound.
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