Is Your Pet Lost?

File a lost report online with ARL

There isn’t a more sinking feeling then when you realize that your furry or feathered companion might have gone missing.  Whether it’s a door left ajar, a booming thunderstorm, or slipped harness during a walk, our pets can all too quickly slip away from our sight.  

In that moment of panic, it’s important to take immediate action by following these 5 steps to increase the likelihood of a happy reunion with your pet: 

  • Call the local Animal Control Officer of the town where you live, and of the town that your pet went missing in. List of Massachusetts Animal Control Officers.

  • File a lost report with ARL either in person, over the phone at (617) 426-9170, or online. This lost report is seen by all three ARL locations. The staff will ask you to provide a photo of your pet. 

  • Contact your pet’s microchip company if your pet has one, to notify them that your pet is lost. Be sure to confirm that your contact information is current. 

  • File a lost report with every shelter within a 60-mile radius of where your pet went missing. Oftentimes, concerned citizens will pick up a stray pet they see on the side of the road and bring it to a shelter that is close to their destination instead of close to where they found the animal. Visit the shelters closest to you as often as possible to check for new incoming lost pets. 

  • Don’t give up! Many pets go missing for months before being reunited with their owners. You will have the best chance of finding your missing pet if you utilize all of the provided tips and continue to search for them as long as you can. 

Other Helpful Tips

Be sure to also search and post on social media, Craigslist, and with online groups that compile lost and found reports, such as Missing Dogs Massachusetts. Check in with neighbors, postal carriers, and utility workers, and post a flyer of your pet around your community and in the local newspaper. You may also consider offering a reward as an incentive, but be wary of people who are unable to describe your pet in detail or require payment via wire transfer or the internet.

Petco Love Lost also helps reunite lost pets with their families. Learn more.

Petco Love Lost banner graphic

Remember to never chase a pet that is in “flight mode”. If your pet is running away from you, the sound of yelling, heavy breathing, and loud footsteps will only encourage them to increase their speed – and pay less attention to their surroundings, such as speeding cars.

For tips on how to deal with panicked pets that may need to be humanely trapped, contact ARL Field Services at (617) 426-9170 x563.