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You open the door and before you can reach out, your puppy zooms past – now you’re on a mission to find your lost puppy.

Losing a dog can happen to anyone so don’t worry, any good dog owner won’t judge you for this. But, it’s critical to get the information out as soon as possible.

Step-by-Step Guide to Find Your Lost Puppy

STEP 1: Before your puppy leaves the property

Play the chasing game, we all know it – when your puppy thinks it’s hilarious to run about, hoping for you to chase them. Your best option here is to run in the opposite direction. The trick is to catch their attention by running away from your pet, flailing your arms, or even making silly noises. Your puppy’s prey drive will kick in, convincing them to join your exciting game of chase.

Throw a handful of food into their bowl and start shaking. While shaking the bowl, call for your puppy in an exciting voice, notin anger. What sensible puppy would come to a screaming, angry owner?

STEP 2: When your puppy has left the area

Your puppy can travel many miles in 30 minutes, but most dogs are found within a 5-mile radius from their home. Stick to the street, on foot, calling for your puppy. Bring their food bowl with you and shake intermittently.

Ask your neighbors for help. Focus on nearby dog owners your puppy may have decided to visit. The best neighbors will join in your search. If you have a social puppy, ask them to bring their dog to help entice your pup out of hiding.

STEP 3: Broaden your search

Think like a dog. Are there any areas nearby with wildlife such as rabbits or stray cats running about? Does your city have compost or dumping areas that put off a strong odour?

Hop in the car, take it slow, and search places your puppy might visit. The route you’ve taken for daily walks will be familiar to your pup.

If you have not been able to find your puppy within two hours, begin making calls to your local SPCA, animal control, and shelters.

STEP 4: Social media and public awareness

Most areas have local Facebook groups for dog owners, or lost-dog groups. Post on all groups you can find to spread the word quicker. Ask friends to share your posts too.

Print posters of your puppy and place them strategically at intersections, dog parks, veterinary practices, and local groomers.

To make it easier to identify and find your puppy, include the following in your social media post or flyer:

  • Front-facing photo
  • Breed of puppy
  • Your number
  • Area puppy was lost
  • Side-facing photo
  • Dog’s name and age
  • Size weight of puppy
  • Distinctive features
  • Fur colour and length
  • Sex of dog (intact or not)
  • Puppy’s temperament

Whether or not to offer a reward is up to you. Be sure to visit anyone who claims to have your dog with a friend – never go alone.

Don’t give up. In the 1920s, Bobbie the Wonder Dog was lost for 6 years and traveled 4105 km to find his owners. Hopefully, you won’t have to wait that long to find your lost puppy. Teenage puppies are more likely to take off, so read our article “The Teenage Puppy” for more information on this challenging stage.

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