Dear Guardian....Please know you can find your sweet kitty by taking action to cover ALL possibilities, whether your kitty is HIDING or STUCK nearby and needs your help to get home. #1 mistake is Waiting to take action. Glad you posted. A GOOD start... 💖🙏🐱 Here is exactly what to do:
TIPS TO FINDING KITTY: Taking ACTION TODAY in person is CRUCIAL. Cats that are not used to being outside or are indoor/outdoor but get spooked by someone or something - will find the 1st place to hide and HUNKER DOWN in SILENCE - They tend to remain VERY NEAR, typically within 1-3 residences and many times right next door - HIDINGin silence. Cats that are scared and in foreign environment will often NOT meow/ respond to calls even from their human (at first) ...though Kitty still needs to HEAR you and keep hearing you (until kitty THINKS it’s safe to come forward) - so do NOT stop calling out... Kitty is in survival mode and meowing would give away the hiding spot to predators. Outside is strange for indoor cat..with wind & loud noises.. Be patient...Don't give up! Kitty is out there.
**IMPORTANT ** CALL for kitty consistently throughout the day and ESPECIALLY TONIGHT from 9 PM until 6AM (when it’s quiet, dark and cats feel ‘safer’ to move out of hiding) Set your alarm for 11pm 1AM, 3AM, 5AM....go out and call for kitty in your NORMAL, CALM voice & wait...shake treats (if that is something kitty normally responds to) I can’t tell you how many kitties come out of hiding during these late hours…(or you can hear meows if trapped in your next door neighbors garage or backyard for example).
GAIN ACCESS TO YOUR NEIGHBORS YARDS: Knock on your neighbors doors and Get permission for YOU to check their yards physically day and evening...explain to them how kitty will hide from strangers and it's best for you to check anywhere kitty could be hiding (they are excellent silent hiders)
LEAVE A WAY BACK INSIDE 24/7 in case kitty sneaks back inside when it’s dark and quiet. Leave the ‘escape’ DOOR/WINDOW edged OPEN 5” with litter box outside, bedding (+food/water). If escaped from the front (and you have a garage) leave garage door open 5" with litter box and food/water inside.
** NOTE: people often will see a cat outside and just think kitty is an indoor/outdoor cat and won't do anything unless they know your cat is missing!
PRINT FLYERS to give your neighbors and to POST UP. Print 100 Flyers and KNOCK ON YOUR NEIGHBORS DOORS, starting with the first 5 neighbors to the left, 5 to the right, 5-10 across the street (if escaped from front) and 5+ neighbors directly behind around the block (if escaped from back) POST UP FLYERS on streetlamps (place inside a clear protective sheet cover - with the open flap facing down so the weather doesn’t ruin them. You can google: “ poly sheet protector” or purchase on amazon or at FEDEX store near you where you can send your print order online for pick up even if they’re closed. Call them once open and ask if they can PRINT right away due to the urgency. fedex staff will always will print quickly. NOTE: They sell the poly sheet protectors and tape. Buy a few rolls of packing tape!
Note: If kitty is used to outdoors (is indoor/outdoor) post flyers 2 blocks out in all directions in case kitty has gone outside your block (if you live near street-end and your cat got out in front for example . Be sure to Focus on your immediate neighbors 10 residences in all directions first.
You can Download an effective flyer ‘template’ on www.happycatlady.com Offer a reward for anyone who sends you a PHOTO of kitty to encourage neighbors to search their residence If you cat is shy at all with strangers, instruct on the flyer for them to not approach kitty but to call ASAP instead.
Post on www.Nextdoor com under ‘lost & found’ and ‘cat owners’ group. with your exact address (or address range like 1000-1050 3rd street cross street Cherry ave for example)
Post on Facebook group for lost pets: Search in your city For San Francisco https://www.facebook.com/groups/lostpetinsanfrancisco/.
Report kitty is lost on 24petconnect.com Check for FOUND cats
Send your Lost Cat flyer to Animal Care & control Check for FOUND cats online daily and in person weekly at your local shelters
NEXTDOOR INVITE: https://nextdoor.com/invite/tlpjrfjfsfzzypgctspp
INVITE LINK TO NEXTDOOR ‘CAT OWNERS GROUP:https://nextdoor.com/g/qazvu50sq/
IMPORTANT: A majority of your neighbors are NOT on Facebook or Nextdoor seeing this post, This is why you MUST go door to door with FLYERS, asking your neighbors to keep an eye out for kitty. Be meticulous - Take notes on a google map printout of which address #s didn’t answer the door and GO BACK later and try again - ASK neighbors to check their yards / garages /sheds / side of house now and again at night with a flashlight to see cat eye reflection. Kitty could be stuck / trapped (this happens all the time!) and talking to your neighbors will help engage them into helping keep vigilant.
PLACE A CAMERA (motion activated with night vision) facing out the escape door with food and watch footage daily - you can't believe how many times a cat will return home - eat - has no way of getting back inside and the owners stops going out at night so the cat disappears back into the night...you may see other cats, raccoons and other creatures eat the food..that's ok...replace the WET food only (raccoons LOVE dry cat food so wet is better) you can buy motion sensor camera on amazon over night - connect to wifi...OR a wild life camera with playback feature (battery operated - no wifi needed)
WiFI Camera with night vision example
WIldlife camera wifi not needed / eight AA batteries: You have to manually check footage
ASK YOUR NEIGHBORS to check their RING CAMERA footage
Less than 10% percent of cats return home on their own...Everything you do adds up to help find kitty! Do not stop searching for kitty every single day/night (though praying for your reunion today). kitty needs you to search in all these ways online and IN PERSON - BE persistent. Stay determined…
Stay positive...Your kitty is most likely hiding (or stuck) VERY NEAR. MANY find their kitties between 10pm-6am! You will lose sleep searching late night and that is ok - this is when even scared cats try to come home. Set your alarm over and over. You can do this! Wishing you sustained HOPE dear neighbor and Praying for kitty’s safe journey home to you soon.
!! WARNING !! New Scam Alert. Scammers will text you saying they’re affiliated with Pawboost and that they HAVE YOUR CAT and that YOU need to PROVE who you are by giving other phone numbers, your email, verifying google codes etc . These are all SCAMMERS - they may tell you meet them somewhere BUT THEY WON'T Send you a PHOTO of your cat (they'll make up any excuse) Tell them you know they are scammers and to stop! Please Trust that If a neighbor sees or has your cat they will give you info freely and not play any strange ‘prove you are the owner of kitty’ games…
P.S. See example below of printing google map and taking notes as you knock on doors. F = flyered (not home) and add names of folks you talk to in person - the goal is to speak to everyone in person in order to engage them - ask them to search their premises and to call you the second they think they see your kitty (and to take a photo) Keeping track is a HUGE HELP - I often return days later to people I've spoken to - to remind them to continue to look around and to check on their RING doorbell footage or backyard video footage - for those neighbors that have cameras!
Beautiful kitty! If she is an indoor only cat or outside her territory , she is hiding very nearby. Cats don’t run away when outside their territory (your house) they hide very close to their point of escape. The good news is indoor cats are always found you just need to look everywhere! Look with a flashlight even during the day. Put out her litter box outside ASAP with food and water and bedding. . Look under bushes, decks, porches and cars with a flashlight even during the day . Look for anywhere she could hunker down and hide in or under. Put flyers on neighbors porches asking them to check their property throughly for anywhere she could be hiding in case she slipped out of your yard. Look inside sheds and garages too. Post on Nextdoor and file a lost report with with the shelter . Hope you find your kitty soon . Just don’t stop looking everywhere . Our daughters cat slipped out of the house and hid almost two weeks until we saw her on security cameras. We finally set a humane cat trap near her litter box and caught her within a few hours. So leave the porch light on and put out some tuna or smelly cat food where you can monitor from a distance. If she continues to hide set the trap in the early morning hours picking up all outside food. Do not leave food out at night. You will find her, just don’t stop looking. Hope you find her soon.
So pretty! If she is an outdoor kitty. Put flyers on neighbors porches asking them to check their property throughly. Look in garages, sheds, basements, crawl spaces, storm drains. Look on roofs and up in trees too. Walk around the area and shake her treats and listen for her. Post on Nextdoor and file a lost report with the shelter. If she is scared, ill or injured, she will hide like an indoor only cat. So look with a flashlight even during the day under bushes, cars, porches and decks. Make a lost report with the shelter and put flyers at nearby vet offices too. Make sure no one in your neighborhood is trapping cats. Hope you find her soon.