Paws With Heart

 

  

 

 


 

 

Searching for a lost cat.

This is one of the BEST articles I have come across with information on finding a lost cat. Cats act differently then dogs when they are lost and this is great information. We thank MISSING PET PARTNERSHIP for allowing us to reprint their article on how to find a lost cat. Please visit them at  www.lostapet.org 

 

 

How most pet flyers are posted

This is how most pet flyers are posted

 

 

Flyers like this go unnoticed by most

But a flyer posted like this goes unnoticed by most people
 

"But a flyer posted like this goes unnoticed

 

Use florescent poster board & non-water soluble ink

Instead use florescent poster board, non-water soluble ink,
and sheet protectors to post your flyers

"Instead use florescent po

ster board, non-water soluble ink,

"Florescent poster boards will catch the attention of everyone passing through the area and generate more leads!"

Florescent poster boards will catch the attention of everyone passing through the area and generate more leads.

"Florescent poster boards will catch the attention of everyone passing through the area and generate more leads!"

 

LOST CAT BEHAVIOR

Lost "Indoor-Only" Cats":

If your indoor-only cat has escaped outside there is good news--your cat is probably not lost at all! That is because it is likely that your cat is hiding and, depending upon the terrain, may be closer than you think! When an indoor-only cat escapes outside, it is a case of where is the cat is likely hiding (usually near the escape point) in fear. That is because cats are territorial and your cat's territory was inside of your home. Once a cat is transplanted into unfamiliar territory, it seeks shelter because it is afraid. A cat that is afraid (and cats that are injured) will seek areas of concealment such as under a deck, under a house, under a porch, in heavy brush and they will not meow! Meowing would give up their location to a predator. It has nothing to do with whether the cat loves you, whether it recognizes your voice, or whether it can smell you--it has everything to do with the fact that a frightened cat will hide and be silent!

The method that Missing Pet Partnership has pioneered that has resulted in the recovery of many "missing" indoor-only cats is the same method used to capture feral cats--the use of a humane trap. We call this “trap-and-reunite” or “TAR”. These wire cages are available for rental from your local shelter or veterinarian or for sale at hardware stores, pet stores, or on-line at www.animal-care.com.  Humane traps have a trip mechanism that when triggered by a cat, will shut the door and contain a cat inside.
 

Cat in a humane trap


Sadly, cat owners are being told to post flyers and to drive twenty miles to check the animal shelter cages but they are not being instructed to set humane traps in their neighbor's yard where their indoor-only cat might be hiding in fear. They are being told to place an advertisement in the local paper but they are not being told that injured cats will likely be hiding within their territory in an area of concealment and that they will not meow. Animal shelters are not providing this information because they are not trained in this new information! Missing Pet Partnership plans to provide training in lost pet behavior to animal shelter staff and volunteers so that more cat owners can be given information that will help them know how and where to search for their missing cat. You can help us by telling the volunteers or staff at your local shelter about our organization and web site! Here are some links related to humanely trapping displaced cats:

Kat Albrecht was interviewed about Lost Cat Behavior in this article 

Pauline Phung’s site  is the best resource for how and why you should humanely trap a lost cat.

Lost Outdoor-Access Cats:


One of the most profound discoveries that we have made at Missing Pet Partnership is that the methods that should be used to search for a missing outdoor-access cat are much different than those used to search for a missing indoor-only cat!

When an outdoor-access cat disappears, it means that something has happened to the cat to interrupt its behavior of coming home. Cats are territorial and they do not just run away from home (like dogs do). Thus the tactics and techniques used to search for a missing cat should be different than those used to search for a missing dog. Lost cat posters will not always help find your cat if it has crawled under your neighbor's deck and is injured and silent. We believe that lost cat posters should be used, but that additional measures should be taken as well. If your outdoor cat is missing, consider that it may be:

TRAPPED – Your cat could be up a tree, on a roof, under a house, inside a neighbor’s basement or shed. This would mean that your cat would likely be within its normal territory, usually a 5-house radius of your home. It is imperative that you obtain permission from your neighbor to enter their yard so that you can look for your cat yourself. DO NOT rely on asking your neighbor to “LOOK” for your cat—their idea of looking will be to call if they see your cat sitting on their patio!

INJURED –
The behavior of an injured or sick (or displaced, panicked) cat is that they will hide in silence. We have called this “The Silence Factor” and this behavior KILLS CATS EVERY DAY! Hiding in silence is a protective mechanism that cats use to protect themselves from predators. What this means is that before you print up lost cat posters or drive down to your shelter to look for your lost cat, SEARCH under and in every conceivable hiding place on your own property and on your neighbor’s property! It is quite possible that your cat is injured and in need of medical attention and you will need to use a flashlight and crawl under your house in order to save his life!

DISPLACED Cats that are chased from their territory either by dogs, people, or other cats who beat them up and cats that are panicked by fireworks will often become “displaced” into unfamiliar territory. Many of these cats, once their adrenaline levels have subsided, will work their way back home, often showing up the next day or a few days later. But many of these cats, especially those with skittish temperaments, will be so panicked by the experience that they will hide in fear and will be too afraid to return home. We’ve seen many cases where a cat was “lost” but was actually just three houses away, crouching and hiding in fear inside a neighbor’s yard! These cats could have jumped a few fences or crossed one street and yet they behaved like they were feral cats, afraid of humans. Some meowed and let their owners pick them up—others darted and ran from their owners and had to be humanely trapped. Understand the critical importance of conducting an aggressive, physical search for your cat within your cat’s immediate territory (neighbor’s yards) in order to determine if your cat is still within the area. The failure to conduct this type of search is why so many cats are never found by their owners and end up being absorbed into the feral cat population. For more information on this behavior, read Kat Albrecht’s book The Lost Pet Chronicles.