Found A Pet

Found Pets Pet FBI logo_square 

Many pets are found by neighbors within close proximity to the pet's home. Bringing the found pet to the shelter should be the last resort. We need community members to assist us in limiting shelter intakes to animals that are truly homeless or suffering and those that represent public safety concerns. If you find a pet that appears healthy and friendly, please submit a Found Pet Report, review the tips and follow the recommendations provided in our Found Pet Resource Packet to expedite the reunion of the pet with its owners. Please try to avoid judgments or assumptions that the pet was intentionally abandoned or not cared for by its family. Pets can become dirty and bedraggled quickly.

There are a few ways you can help a lost pet get back to its home without bringing it to the shelter.

Microchip Scanning Now Available Throughout City

Animal Services (RAS) has provided microchip scanners to Neighborhood Service Centers, R-Centers and pet stores to help reunite missing pets with their people. Email us if your organization or business is interested in becoming a microchip scanning location. Scanner distribution is contingent upon funding and with consideration for equitable access to the service.

Staff at these sites can use the scanners to search for microchips on lost animals they encounter to help the finder locate the owner. If a microchip is identified, the finder or the staff member can check the American Animal Hospital Association’s online Universal Pet Microchip Lookup Tool to facilitate re-unification. Scanners are located at:  

What To Do If You Find A Lost Dog

  1. Be Safe
    If you are able to, get the dog to a safe and secure area. Be aware of surroundings. Your safety and the safety of others should come first. DO NOT RUN OR CHASE DOG INTO TRAFFIC.
  2. Check for identification
    Check if the dog is wearing a collar and has an ID tag or a license tag. Sometimes people write phone numbers directly on the collar instead of attaching a tag. Also check for possible injuries. If there is an identification tag, call or text and set up a reunion. For City licenses, call the Animal Services Center at 585-428-7274. For rabies tags, contact the veterinary clinic listed.
  3. Knock on doors
    Check with your neighbors or other people in the area. They may know the dog and can help you locate its home.
  4. Snap photos 
    Take shots of the dog, street signs, and area where dog was found.
  1. File a Found Pet Report
    Call 585-428-7274 or submit online Found Pet Report, or visit the shelter to during regular business hours.
  2. Check for microchip
    Take the dog to a local vet’s office, the Animal Services Center, or any of the locations listed above to scan for a microchip. If the dog has a chip, check the registry. This may be the fastest and best way to find an owner. RAS can help with research, if the chip is not registered. If not registered, check AAHA Microchip Lookup for the company where the microchip originated. Call the company and ask them to contact the pet owner.
  3. Post on social media Post photos and location on social media sites like Craigslist, Facebook, and Nextdoor. Create Found Pet profile on Petco Love Lost, which uses facial recognition to match lost and founding postings.
  1. Make and Post Flyers
    Hang flyers in heavy traffic areas and public spaces near where the dog was found. Good old fashioned leg work is still the best way to locate an owner.
  2. Can you hold onto the dog for 48 hours?
    Typically, pets do not wander very far from home so chances are that someone is looking for them close to where they were found. Keeping a found pet at home helps keep shelter population low and prevents the missing pet from being housed in a high-stress environment and exposed to disease. RAS can provide vaccines for found pets if you are willing to take them home with you. If you do take in a lost dog, it is always best to house the dog separately from other pets and from small children to avoid any possible injuries or contagious illnesses.
  3. If you cannot locate owner and cannot keep…
    If you are not able to house the dog safely, you can bring it to the shelter during regular business hours. To make an appointment call 585-428-7274. Our team may also have other options for the pet that don’t require coming to the shelter. 

    Even if a dog is found dirty, injured, or afraid, it does not necessarily mean the dog was abused or dumped. Try to avoid making assumptions or judgements. It is possible that the dog has been missing for several days or even weeks and has been injured or experienced adverse conditions during that time. Ask yourself, if you had lost a pet, what would you want a finder to do?

What To Do If You Find A Lost Cat

Most cats you see outdoors are not in need of intervention and should be left where they are. So first determine whether this is a cat in need of immediate attention (sick or injured) or a healthy neighborhood cat out for a stroll. Review Lost Cat vs Community CatIf you are unsure or would like more information about community cats and Trap-Neuter-Vaccinate-Return (TNVR), please visit cityofrochester.gov/communitycats.  

Signs that a cat is sick or injured include the following: Infographic - sick or injured cats

● How is this cat injured? Is it able to walk on all 4 legs, bleeding, etc.?

● Is the cat wearing a collar?

● Are the cat’s eyes clear?

● Does the cat appear underfed?

● Is breathing slow and labored?

● Is the cat hunched up in possible pain?

● Does the coat appear dirty or missing patches of fur?

● Is the cat declawed?

 

If you believe this is a lost or abandoned cat:

● Take a photo of the cat. Try for a full-body side view with face, preferably standing so you have a clear image of the cat and its markings. Use the photo for posting on Nextdoor, social media, and at nearby intersections. More cats are reunited as a result of good posters and flyers than as a result of social media, so get those posters up while the cat is still around and visible.

● Get the cat scanned for a microchip at any vet, animal shelter, or participating pet stores. This is a free service and no appointment is necessary. If you are not able to transport the cat, ask animal services or your local rescue community for assistance.Infographic - Ask your neighbors

● If the cat is in danger and urgent action is necessary, bring or lure the cat into your home or garage to keep it safe if you are able to do so safely. (Otherwise, request assistance from Animal Services.) The space should be dark and quiet, a separate room well away from children and other pets. Equip the area with food, water, and litter. Contact Animal Services if you need help with cat food or cat litter. Once the danger is gone, return the cat to the location where found. 

○ If the cat is not in danger or sick/injured, do not bring the cat indoors; leave him in place, or return the cat to the exact location you picked him up  prior to microchip scanning so he may return home on his own. You may provide food/water support.

● Next, post the found cat alert on Nextdoor.com, PetHarbor.com, HelpingLostPets.com, Pawboost.com, lost.petcolove.org and Craigslist.in Pets category and Lost and Found Community section.

If unable to contain the cat, use this template to make a paper cat collar. You can also write a note asking about the cat with your contact info, fold it up and tape the ends to form a collar.

Do not give a cat away or offer up for adoption until you have covered the above steps for at least a week, branching out beyond your immediate area, to make sure no one is searching for this cat. You would want the same done if it were your cat.

If you see a deceased cat, take a photo and call 428-5990. The City will pick the deceased cat up and scan for a microchip in order to notify owners, if possible.

Kittens:
If you found kittens, please visit What To Do If You Find Kittens and Kitten Lady for information on how to keep them with mom and out of the shelter.

Sick or Injured Animals:
If you have found a sick or injured pet that needs medical assistance, please bring it to RAS during regular business hours. For after-hours service, call 911.

After Hours:
Animal Emergency Services operates the emergency veterinary clinic at 825 White Spruce Blvd and accepts sick or injured strays from Good Samaritans outside of RAS hours. Call 585-424-1277 to let them know if you are bringing in a sick or injured animal that you found.


                                                       Found Pet Resource Packet 

                                                        Submit a Found Pet Report

 

The animals listed below came to us as unidentified, lost pets or were found and cared for by community members who are assisting with reuniting the lost pets with their owners. Most lost companion animals are found very close to their homes and often can be reunited with their people without requiring intake at the animal shelter. The following are photos and reports for animals brought to us as unidentified, lost pets and also pets that were found in the city of Rochester that are staying with the people who found them to assist with getting the animals back home. Finders receive guidance and support from our office and they submit Found Animal Reports, post Found Pet Flyers, create Petco Love Lost listings, and knock on doors to attempt to locate the animals' people or individuals who may know where the animals' homes are.

Search Found Dogs

Search Found Cats

Search Other Found Pets

 

Try searching using Petco Love Lost by clicking the link below.

 

 

SEE ALSO

Pets and Animals