What to do if your pet goes missing

Hi pals. I know I’ve been MIA, but mom’s not having a good time right now. But things will be better in a couple of weeks, and then maybe we can get back to blogging more regularly. And I’ll have lots to tell you then!

In the meantime, I got an email today from Maia at the Denver Dumb Friends League. It had good information on what to do if you pet goes missing. She also sent the story of Sadie, a dog who lost her human and how they found each other again. I thought you’d like to see these. So here is Sadie’s story:

Courtesy of the Denver Dumb Friends League

“The metro area’s population explosion hasn’t been limited to humans. Thousands of pets have come along with their families—some eager, many nervous about starting new lives in unfamiliar territory.

Sadie wedged herself into the back seat when John S., two buddies, and all their gear made the trip in February from Connecticut. She was comfortable enough on the cross-country drive, but shortly after they arrived in Denver, she slipped away, no doubt intent on returning home. She wasn’t on the loose for long when a neighbor spotted her and called the cell number on her tag.

The key to Sadie’s quick return was that all-important ID tag. Without it, the neighbor’s options were more time-consuming, more inconvenient. The tag attached to her collar made it simple. Sadie was back in John’s care within an hour or two.

It’s a fact: Pets are less secure and thus more apt to become a flight risk when their routines are interrupted, particularly when they are away from familiar surroundings.

A microchip implant is another important identification tool. A tiny chip, the size of a grain of rice, is inserted under the animal’s skin and can be read at any shelter or veterinarian’s office. But even if a pet is chipped, he or she needs to wear a visible ID tag.

If you are among the many pet-lovers who have recently put down roots in our community, welcome! And if your cat or dog manages to leave home before you’ve had an opportunity to get it licensed or update its tag, here are some tips to help get it back safely.

First, act fast! Walk or drive your neighborhood and tell everyone you meet. Be sure to give out your phone/text number. Hang (and date) posters wherever you are permitted. Include your pet’s photo and offer a reward. Utilize social media sites like Nextdoor.com. Broaden your search through Craigslist, Twitter and Facebook.

Next, check the shelters closest to where your pet was lost. Visit in person to file a report, and take along a photo. Check outlying shelters, too. Find locations on the Metro Denver Animal Welfare Alliance website at mdawalliance.org.

On the flip side, when you see a stray pet, be a good neighbor, like the one who helped Sadie. If there are no ID tags, take the animal to the nearest shelter right away. The shelter staff will scan it for a microchip and provide a safe haven, while they work to reunite it with its people.

If taking the pet to a shelter is not an option or you want to keep it temporarily at your home, you’ll still want to have it checked for a microchip and file a “found” report with the shelter. Then, distribute fliers and post a “found pet” notice on internet sites, but be cautious. Don’t include a photo, and be sure to withhold some key information, so you can be certain anyone who contacts you is the actual owner.”

The info above is tailored to the Denver area, but I bet similar resources are available all over the US.

Maia also sent this infographic.

Courtesy of MDAWA

I hope none of you ever get lost, but it’s good to know what to do just in case. Thank you MDAWA and DDFL for providing this information.

Have a great week everyone!

DDFL’s CatFest Follow-up

Pals, I just got the following press release from the Denver Dumb Friends League. It’s pawsome news!

Dumb Friends League CatFest results in nearly 100 cat adoptions

 DENVER (July 16, 2012) We may be in the dog days of summer, but cats ruled this past Saturday, July 14, at the fourth annual CatFest. The Dumb Friends League placed 124 pets—98 of those being cats and kittens—on that single day.

 In addition to all those animals finding new homes, Animal Planet’s celebrity cat behaviorist, Jackson Galaxy, spent the afternoon answering cat-related questions, signing autographs and taking pictures with cat enthusiasts. More than 2,000 people experienced a purebred cat exhibition, a Meow Market with vendors selling cat-related merchandise, clicker-training demonstrations and numerous free activities for children.

“We’re thrilled that thousands of cat lovers joined us for CatFest and that so many took advantage of our heavily reduced adoption fees for cats and kittens,” said Bob Rohde, Dumb Friends League president and CEO. “Cats make wonderful pets—they not only bring joy and companionship to your life; but they are affectionate, intelligent and very receptive to training.”

To help even more felines find homes, the Dumb Friends League will continue to offer $10 adoption fees for all cats over 7 months old through July 31. The special takes place at all Dumb Friends League adoption locations. Every cat adoption fee includes a spay/neuter surgery, initial vaccinations, a microchip ID implant and a free office visit with a participating veterinarian.

CatFest was sponsored by Hill’s Science Diet®. For more information on the Dumb Friends League and its $10 cat adoption special, visit ddfl.org or call (303) 751-5772.

About the Dumb Friends League

Founded in 1910, the Dumb Friends League is the largest community-based animal welfare organization in the Rocky Mountain Region helping pets and people in the Denver metro area and beyond. In 2012, the Dumb Friends League expanded the scope of its services to include providing shelter, care and hope for abused and neglected equines in Colorado. The Dumb Friends League has shelters at 2080 S. Quebec St. in Denver and the Buddy Center at 4556 Castleton Court in Castle Rock, as well as the Dumb Friends League Harmony Equine Center near Franktown. For more information about the Dumb Friends League, visit ddfl.org or call (303) 751-5772.

98 cats and kittens getting new furever homes in just one day! That’s what I call a successful CatFest. I can’t wait for next year’s. Maybe the weather will be cooler and I’ll get to go in the fur! Concatulations to the Denver Dumb Friends League for a pawsome job.

Denver Dumb Friends League CatFest

Today Mom and Flat Me had a real fun outing. We went to the Denver Dumb Friends League for their CatFest! They’ve been doing this for several years to help increase cat adoptions. The festival does this by drawing more people in so they see the beautiful kitties that are up for adoption and by providing education about cats to dispel a lot of the myths that are out there about kitties.

We were met by DDFL’s PR manager, Chris Gallegos. He told us that DDFL hopes to adopt out 100 kitties during this year’s CatFest week. Their average for prior festivals is 70. I hope they make their goal because they have about 575 cats and kittens to rehome right now. To help make this goal, cats are only $10 to adopt during CatFest. They’ve been advertising CatFest more aggressively this year. And one of the local news channels, 9News, helped out by profiling available cats twice a day all week! How cool is that?

There were lots of vendors at at CatFest. They were selling pawsome cat trees, not-so-shameful cones-of-shame, cat toys, cat trapezes, nip, jewelry, and stuff for our humans, too, like a food court. There were also education stations, like ask-a-vet, the purebreed cat room with lots of purebred kitties to meet, and a clicker training demonstration.[nggallery id=8]

Mom’s an art nut, so one of her favorite vendors was someone who does portraits. His website is airbrush-portraits.com by Bas. I bet you know who my favorite vendor was. Did you see who was standing in the cat trapeze booth? My furriend Kate Benjamin from moderncat.net!

There were lots of fun things for the kids to do. There was face painting, arts and crafts, a bouncy house, and other games and activities. One was a junior group for educating kids about cats. [nggallery id=9]

One of the big sponsors of CatFest was Hills. They were giving away a food sample. You know what that means – a product review in the works.

Flat Me had fun getting my picture taken. [nggallery id=10]

Here’s the best picture of Flat Me:

Do you see who’s holding Flat Me? Woo hoo!

That’s right my furriends – the one and only Jackson Galaxy was at CatFest! Flat Me got my picture taken with him and I got his autograph on one of my moo cards. I only wish I could have been there in the fur, but it was almost 100 degrees out and the space where we were waiting to see Jackson was very narrow and crowded. I’d have been too hot outside and my big old stroller would have taken up too much room inside. So Flat Me had all the fun.

So that was CatFest. The Denver Dumb Friends League has all kinds of great events during the year. If you’re in the Denver area, go to their website to see what’s coming up next. DDFL doesn’t just help cats and dogs find homes. They work with horses, guinea pigs, rabbits, and all kinds of pets in every size you can imagine. Please think of them the next time you’re thinking of adopting a new furriend. And if you find any spare change under the sofa cushions, you can donate it here.