I have lost my dog! What should I do?
After this night, when I again!!!
I mean AGAIN had to go after my dogs who just decided they want to go to chill around!
I decided I have to write an article what should you do when your dog gets lost!
Tonight my two Belgian Shepherd Malinois just run away after midnight and chilled around till early morning. No sleep for me, constant searching till I early morning finally found them. You can imagine how mad and frustrated I was!
Most important for every dog owner is to keep my dog safe and sound. We tend not to think about it if before something happens and one of the worst things what can happen is when my dog gets lost.
When you lose your dog the most critical resource is time!
You need to act immediately and do not stop before you find your dog!
and I mean it!
DO NOT STOP before you find your dog!
Time is extremely critical factor in this case.
Go to search around the place your dog got lost and call your dogs name as much as possible
I just go around and endlessly search my dog with calling her by name. I get all my family members out to search with me and we spread around to cover maximum area. Usually, dogs just want to have a little fun and forget they must be responsible. When they hear their name called, mostly they come back. In this case time is always critical. The earlier you start the closer they are. As dogs move very fast they can be at the place you are at the moment after few minutes. They usually run a specific path which they choose depending of the area. And they come back at the same spot again and again and again.
If it is close for the home, it’s fun for them. And they often just come back to the home when they hear the name called. Be very positive and optimistic and do not punish your dog when he returns. Otherwise, next time he might be too afraid to come at all. In this case most of the time people get their dogs back.
If you loose your dog in strange place, like in a forest, it might become stressful. Dog becomes wild within days, some dogs even within couple of hours. In a strange place for them, leave your jacket or some other larger personal items on a spot and go to check it once in a while. But do not stop searching! This is a very serious case and if you don’t act fast you might loose your dog forever.
Ask for people around if they have seen your dog and go check every hint
You are lucky when this happens during daytime. Just go around and ask from the people if they have seen your dog and go check every hint! I mean EVERY hint!. You never know which one is your dog, but to make sure you must go to check it. Sometimes with hugely populated area you are in advantage as many people means many pair of eyes. Quite often you can hear from people that dog has been spotted in certain area so you know where to go to search. And when people know dog is lost they know to keep eyes open and let you know when they see one.
Report to the local region shelter that you have lost your dog and give them remarks of the dog and dogs microchip or any other identification number
One very important thing to do is to report in the local regional shelter and depends of the country and culture also maybe to the community and local police in smaller places and leave them your number. It would be wise to do quite in the beginning of search. Countries are different and culture is different, but in every country and in every place I have ever been is always a community that helps to spread information in between people. I have been during the years helped by many people, dog enthusiasts, local police and just normal people on their way who have seen my dogs wondering around. Yes, such things happen, dogs run wild sometimes and during 20 years I have seen enough.
Post in the Lost Dogs web page that you have lost your dog
Nowdays also internet can be useful tool to help to spread information that your dog is lost. Find a lost and found dog page that covers your territory and report it there. It must be specific region related web page which is specifically concentrated to help people who have lost their dogs to find their dogs. In smaller countries also Facebook can be useful tool but to my experience in larger regions where internet is not so popular as in some small countries it is a waste of time. Facebook worked some years ago but now it is full of junk and you can not find anything anymore from there. The same way as Google. The world is evolving so is internet and the only dog specific places with real dog people can be of help of yours! Go to specific dedicated your region dog people places and post there.
DO NOT PANIC, be extremely systematical and DO NOT GIVE UP
Most important! Stay calm and be systematic. And never ever give up!
I have never lost a dog when I have kept searching. I have bad experience from childhood and when I as grown up lost my 5 months old puppy I never give up anymore. My five months puppy was found 800 meters from my house hit by a car, still warm but dead, five days after he disappeared. If I had been relentlessly searching without given up he would not had died. I have never been able to forgive it myself. Ever….
Stay Optimistic! Always!
Best thing you can do for yourself is to stay always optimistic. That helps most!
Having dogs for so long I have been often in the situation when young dogs run wild. No matter how hard you try with all the electric fences, close all the doors and gates, build fences higher and use smart solutions it still happens.
This time my dogs run wild at night. Two Malinois, one year old and two years old. I got back at the house 1.30am, opened the dogs for a run, went inside the house, came back outside 1.35am and they were gone.
One dog I got back in the morning at 4am from the streets. And another one I spotted from my house window at 7.30am running towards the house and stopped her in front of my house.
So never, ever, stop looking. Do not give up! You will find them! But it is extremely time critical, the more time goes the lower are the chances you get your dog back. Act fast!
I will write an article about how to prevent dogs escaping and loosing your dog. But that will be next time.
One of the most searched sentences from pet owners in the internet! “I have lost my dog! What should I do?”
So meanwhile, to make your dog as safe as possible, register in our digital PetID system and register your dog, your dogs microchip number and do not forget to add your phone number so people could contact you when in need.