Go out at night around 9:10 when it's quiet shake a bag of treats call their names look under sheds bushes garages ask your neighbors to check in their sheds and garages also the most important thing is putting out the litter box they can smell their urine they can smell it from from a mile away
INDOOR and can apply to INDOOR/OUTDOOR
▪️Physically go out and look for the cat. Search your own property and then expand to neighboring properties, with permission. Cats can get into small spaces and will hide in silence.
▪️Follow the edge of the house or building. A panicked cat will most likely follow along the side of a house or building they got out from.
▪️Use a flashlight to look under porches, decks, dense brush. Check window wells, up trees, under cars, in cars, car engine areas, even groundhog holes.
▪️Garages, sheds, buildings cat could have gotten trapped in or under.
Ask neighbors to check around their homes, vehicles, any buildings the cat could have gotten trapped in. You’re probably better off checking yourself if the neighbor will allow. Not many are going to actually look under porches, decks for your lost cat. And if they got trapped in a neighbors shed, they may not look in the many hiding areas where a cat could hide.
▪️Thoroughly check the inside of the house.
- post on the NextDoor app if you have it.
THINGS TO TRY/DO
▪️Put out food/water near where the cat got out. Place anything with owners scent on outside.
▪️Shake their treat/food bag, open a can of food outside.
▪️Leave a window, door, garage door partially open, after securing any other pets.
▪️Post flyers -place them in ziploc bags to keep them dry. Drop off flyers to neighbors, vets, local businesses, etc. Flyers are important. Not everyone uses social media or is aware of these sites. People may just think your cat is just another stray cat, especially in areas with stray cats or a lot of outdoor cats in the neighborhood. Notify shelters, message a pic to them.
▪️Post to Lost/found sites, shelter/rescue Facebook pages. Post to Craigslist. Check shelters and rescues in person. Post to the NextDoor app.
▪️Set up a humane trap. You can try tuna, chicken-rotisserie and KFC work well (no bones of course) sardines or even just canned cat food. Try putting some small tempting pieces outside the trap, then some leading into the trap with the bulk of it in the back behind the trip plate. Try covering the side and back with a towel. Make sure you monitor and check the trap frequently.
▪️Try just sitting outside quietly talking. Try using a laser pointer at night to draw them out of hiding.
▪️If you have access to trail cameras or even a security camera, you could set that up close to the trap or near the area the cat got out to see if it’s coming around when you aren’t watching.
LOST CAT BEHAVIOR
▪️They tend to not go far unless chased by a predator, another territorial cat, dog, human. They generally hide very close to the house they got out from.
▪️They can hide in silence. And in fear. Some will mew very softy so listen closely.
▪️Some will come back after midnight or the very early morning hours.
▪️If you moved and didn't move far, check your old place out. Some cats return to their former home.
▪️They generally will not come if called.
♦️NOTE- It generally is not recommend to put their dirty litter box outside, it can attract predators such as coyote and other aggressive territorial cats.
Kitty litter myth
♦️NOTE- If your cat was never found, please continue to check the lost/found sites/shelter/rescue posts. Cats can be found weeks, months, and years after they went missing. With the amount that are lost, it is sometimes hard to remember and keep track of them all.
♦️NOTE- Microchipping can increase the chance of your cat getting home to you if found by someone and brought to a shelter/vet.