The shock is huge once you find that your beloved cat has run away. She doesn’t do it on purpose! Either she is scared and does not find her way back or the cause is pure curiosity or the hormones.
No matter if it is a house tiger or a free-range cat that has not come back for far too long, how to find your cat that ran away? There is no need to panic. There are many options that can help you find your missing cat. In this guide, I have listed what these are.
First of all: If you miss your cat, you have to stay CALM! You can take the necessary steps better with a cool head before you do anything else.
Then, search the apartment again,you should check whether the cat has really run away, or whether it may have been hiding somewhere in the apartment. Therefore, first look at places where your cat could hide: tumble dryer, cellar, behind the sofa, on a kitchen cabinet – cats are masters of hiding …
If you can’t find the cat in the apartment, extend your search to the surrounding area. Your cat will not have moved too far from home . The indoor cats are mostly unsettled and do not move very far from their home.
But also the areas of free-range cats are not infinitely large: It usually extends around 500 meters around the house – a maximum of 1-1.5 kilometers for uncastrated cats.
The search is most likely to be successful in this area. Start near the house and then work your way outwards. Call your cat by name and try to attract them. Even mating calls, the rustle of dry food or the familiar clatter with the feed pan can elicit your cat.
The search for a runaway cat is also possible at night. Cats are then more active than during the day, since their prey animals are also largely nocturnal. Since cats often lie down somewhere to sleep or doze during the day and therefore ignore your calls, chances of finding them at night are sometimes even better.
So arm yourself with a flashlight and search your cat’s territory. Because the cat’s eyes reflect the light from a flashlight over long distances , the chance of finding a cat that has run away at night is pretty good.
- If you search for the missing cat with several people , the chances of finding it again increase.
- With several people, you can also search the apartment for the cat in parallel and comb through the area around the house.
- Include your neighbors in the search.
- Check trees, maybe your cat has climbed up and can’t come down alone.
- Look for places where an injured cat would hide: under hedges or bushes, under cars, or in other protected places.
Places where you should ask about the lost cat
Animal shelters – Shortly after your cat has escaped, you should call the next animal shelter for the first time. In cities in particular, found cats are quickly passed on, so you should call at regular intervals.
Community / Police – Depending on the community, cats found must be reported to the lost property office or the police. So call there and ask.
Veterinarians – You should also inquire at the closest veterinarians. If your cat is injured, it will likely be dropped off there.
Important: Submit a photo of your missing cat with all contact details (you can also send it by email) to all of the above locations so that your cat can be easily identified and notified!
Ask the neighbors for help
Please ask your neighbors within a radius of around 500 meters around your house. And you can also search their garden because cats don’t keep to the property boundaries.
Also clarify whether your cat may have been accidentally locked in the basement, garage or garden shed / tool shed .
In general, you should rather address the direct neighbors personally and not immediately fill up the neighborhood with search slips, this is more effective.
Offer your neighbors a finder’s reward , which could increase the motivation to look for your cat.
Ask your neighbors if you shouldn’t be able to look into the basement, garage, etc. – after all, cats are shy of strangers, hide and don’t give a peep.
Feel free to ask your neighbors several times if they saw your cat, this will remind them to keep their eyes open.
Hang up the search slip / profile
Of course, the search list can help your runaway cat recover . Especially since you can easily create and print out a search slip yourself on the computer.
Do not be frugal with search posters, this increases the likelihood that they will be noticed. Usually you only notice a note when you have passed it a third or fourth time. Hang them on trees (please with scotch tape!), Fences, street signs and lanterns.
Tip: Copy your profile in a copy shop, it is much cheaper than printing them all on your own printer!
Put the profiles in the vicinity of 2 kilometers in mailboxes, that increases the chance that they will be registered tremendously.
Also ask in supermarkets, doctor’s surgeries (especially of course veterinary surgeries) and kiosks whether you can lay out and hang up your search slip.
An example of a search slip for a lost cat :
- A large, short headline that can be quickly captured as you walk past ( cat wanted / lost cat / found cat )
- A large picture in which the runaway cat can be clearly seen , preferably in color.
- When was the cat lost?
- A brief description of your cat and special features that can be used to identify it without a doubt.
- Where is the cat usually? Specify street names.
- Ask residents to inspect cellars, garages and garden sheds.
- Do not call out a finder’s reward – finders’ reward only promises neighbors you know personally, strangers could only come up with stupid thoughts through a finder’s reward.
- Telephone and mobile number so that you can easily get in touch with you.
- The request not to remove the note – important, therefore printed in bold. Point out that you will dispose of the note yourself after the search.
- Phone numbers that can be torn off at the bottom of the search poster (cut with scissors) are also very good.
- The best way to print a color image is on white paper, as this makes it easier to identify your missing cat in the picture .
- It would be optimal to hang the search slips in transparencies or to laminate them beforehand. So you can withstand the weather outside longer and remain legible.
Use the internet and social networks to find the runaway cat
You can also use the Internet to find your missing cat . Especially social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus are suitable here, especially if you are there friends with many people from your environment.
you can also start an advertisement on Facebook, which is only delivered to residents of your area or to friends of your friends. A call to look for your cat along with a photo and a request to spread the call can quickly reach hundreds of people around you.
You can forget about internet forums (cat forums). The chance that someone from your area will read your call there is almost zero.
How to prevent your cat from getting lost
If you are afraid that your cat might escape, you should take some precautions to make it easier for your cat to be found.
Take photos – You should always have the latest photos of your cat ready. It is important that the photos show special characteristics of your cat. So you can use the photos for search slips. The photos are also important so that you can prove that the cat belongs to you.
Train lure sound – If you are looking for your missing cat, it is useful if you can call it with a lure sound. Buy a bell or something similar that you can use to produce a bright, loud sound. Then always let this tone sound to call your cats to eat. Your cat will then combine this tone with food and be attracted to it well.
Chip and tattoo – You should have your cat both chipped and tattooed . Every finder can immediately see from the tattoo that the cat has a holder. The identity of the cat can also be verified beyond doubt via the chip, which you can have “attached” by any veterinarian with a syringe under the cat’s neck skin.
GPS tracker or tracking device on a safety collar – both are reliable technical means to locate a missing cat. Important: Use a high-quality safety collar to attach the tracker to your cat!