Microchip identification ,with appropriate recording of CURRENT animal /owner data should provide you with some peace of mind, because it provides a permanent link to you as an owner, both now and in to the future, for the life of your pet.
There is a network of readers across Australia, and agencies routinely scanning all unidentified strays, and our experience is that recoveries are frequent and sometimes your pet may be located even years later or in other States.
What else can you do?
Loss of your pet is a time of great anxiety both for you and your pet.
The following 9 STEPS will help increase your chances of your pet being returned to you or your your family.
STEP 1 - It is essential that you continue to UPDATE your details with CENTRAL ANIMAL RECORDS..
STEP 2 - Contact Central Animal Records by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 03 9706 3187 during business hours to advise that your pet is missing. Please quote the microchip number as a reference. This also gives the opportunity to confirm your details so that we can contact you the moment we are contacted with the whereabouts of your pet
STEP 3- Contact your local Council and any Animal Welfare Shelters to advise them that your pet is missing.
It is also worth contacting neighbouring Councils in case your pet has wandered and is found over your Council boundary.
You will need to be able to provide them with your name & contact details, as well as a detailed description based on breed, colour, sex, where lost, and any other identification (such as microchip number, tattoos etc.), including the day, date and time (if known) that your pet went missing.
To contact the animal welfare societies in your area. The numbers can be located in the Yellow Pages under "animal welfare". It is advisable to contact all that are listed, even if they are out of your local area. Animals have been known to travel great distances and there is the possibility that the animal could have been picked up and taken out of the area.
STEP 4 - VISIT BOTH your local Council pound facility and Animal Welfare facility, not just once, but regularly, as pets sometimes are presented days or weeks later. A large number of animals pass through pounds and shelters , and sometimes your description over the telephone, especially cross breeds, can be misinterpreted.
STEP 5 - Contact Veterinarians in your local area and after hours emergency veterinarian centres to advise that the animal is missing.
STEP 6 - Door knock or letter drop your local area. Cats especially can be locked in garages or under houses without the knowledge of home owners . Ask your neighbours to please check.
STEP 7 - Place notices in the local shops advising that the animal is missing.
It is beneficial if you can include a recent photograph of the animal.
STEP 8 - Contact the local media where possible. Local newspapers can place an ad in the "Lost and Found" section of the newspaper. Radio stations may announce lost animals in the community announcement sections.
STEP 9 - Check out useful internet websites such as:
(i) Some local Council websites that list (sometimes with images) Lost and Found Pets in their municipality or
(ii) Websites devoted to reuniting pets and their owners by reporting missing pets to members or allowing listings of missing pets with images. A great example of this type of website is Lost Pet Finders which is at the heart of an ever expanding network of vets, pounds, animal agencies, neighbours and animal lovers determined to help lost pets find their way home.
Good luck, we wish you every success in locating your pet.