Lost and Found Pets

Dogs and cats are enormously popular as companion animals in the United States and are considered by many owners to be part of the family.  A pet that strays from its home can be at serious risk for starvation, injury, or death. Given the strength of the human-animal bond and the emotional attachment that many owners have to their pets, having a pet stray from its home can be traumatic and distressing for the owner.

Little research has been done previously to understand how owners look for a lost pet, and what search methods are most effective for successful reunification.  The purposes of these studies were to characterize the process by which owners search for lost pets, and identify factors associated with time to recovery.  Results of these studies have been published in The Journal of the Veterinary Medical Association.

Read the University Press Release and/or the JAVMA Press Release.

JAVMA Study Results

Plan for Happy Reunion Brochure

This brochure Adobe PDF File offers helpful information for pet owners on the importance of pet identification to keep pets safe. In addition, there is a checklist for pet owners offering suggestions and actions if their pet becomes lost. It is designed for use in puppy and kitten packages, as well distribution during wellness examinations.