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What to Do If Your Cat Gets Lost

One of the most terrifying things a cat caretaker can experience is the realization that their cat is missing. Here's what to do if you ever find yourself in this situation:

  1. First and foremost, stay calm.

  2. Search any enclosed spaces in your home or on your property.

  3. Write a description of your cat, including distinguishing features and vaccination status. If your cat has any special medical needs, include that information as well. This information will help people know that your cat is well cared-for and loved, and it will help any veterinarian who happens to receive her for treatment.

  4. The next day, expand your search to your block or within a quarter-mile on either side of your home, including neighbors' sheds or barns (with their permission). Look by the roadside, just in case.

  5. Make and distribute a poster about your cat, using recent photos and the description you've put together. (You can create a lost pet poster to print at Dogster's Together Tag website.) If you offer a reward, leave out a few key distinguishing details about your cat; you don't want people calling you just to get the money. Be sure the poster includes your contact information!

  6. Contact local animal shelters, your local animal control officer, and area veterinarians. Provide a copy of your poster to them if possible.

  7. The following day, search the perimeter of your property again. Be sure to bring the means to carry your cat if you should find her injured or dead. Don't give up hope.

You may find some assistance in contacting an animal communicator. But remember that many animal communicators don't like to take on "missing animal" cases because no matter how good they are at other types of animal communication, missing pet cases tend to have a much lower success rate.

At some point you may have to accept that your cat either doesn't want to be found or can't be found. One of the most difficult parts of the grieving process is coming to this acceptance. You'll probably find that just about the time you accept that your cat is gone, she'll show up on your doorstep looking at you like "Hey, what's the big deal?"

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