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What to Do If You Find a Lost Dog

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Hey. Last week I gave 5 tips for good dog health. This week I’m going to talk about something very important to me- What to Do If You Find a Lost Dog.

If by any chance you find a lost dog, the first thing you need to have in mind is that you need to stay safe, as well as the dog.  A scared or an injured lost dog may behave unpredictably. Any sudden move may scare him and make him attack you or run into traffic. If the dog looks like he is going to attack you, or if for any reason you feel unsafe, stay away from the lost dog and contact the local animal control.

If the lost dog looks like he is not threatened by your presence, you should still approach with caution. If you get close enough to the dog, have in mind that you are still in risk of being bitten by a dog whose vaccination status is unknown.

When approaching the lost dog, you have to speak in a soothing voice. The best way is to offer the dog some food so he will approach you.

Once the lost dog is with you try and find his owners- that’s the first thing you should aim for and assume.

Check to see if the lost dog has an ID tag or tattoo. Keep in mind that there are some dog owners that let their dogs go on “walks” because they know exactly where their home is. You can try to place a leash on the lost dog and say “home!”- to see if the dog starts leading you somewhere.

Please remember that the lost dog probably belongs to someone, and by law you need to report lost dogs to local authorities, meaning the animal shelters where their owners can find them. If you decide that you don’t want to get the lost dog to shelter, you still have to notify them incase the owners show up. You will have to file a found dog report where you have to give the location where you found it, and your contact information.

After this is done, check the area for any “Lost dog” posters, but remember that the dog might have traveled quite far and the posters could be far away, or the dog might be lost for just a few hours and the owners haven’t yet put up posters.

Lastly, but perhaps most importantly-take the lost dog to a vet’s office. There are two reasons to do so; one is to check for general dog health and get reccomendations. The other reason is to see if they can scan him for a microchip ID, which is injected under the dog’s skin.

If nothing of the above worked, print a “Dog found” posters with the lost dog’s picture and the information about where and when you found him, with your contact information.

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