Lost and Found Cats - what to do
We know how upsetting and stressful it can be when your cat goes missing and the sooner we can post it to the widest possible audience the more likely that he/she will found. Social media has such a wide reach and therefore we have a Facebook page dedicated to reuniting lost and found cats with their owners.
If you are able to, please post details of your lost cat to our Lost and Found Facebook page. Your post should contain:
- A clear, recent photo of your cat
- Any contact details you are prepared to share. If you do not wish to post a contact number, please monitor the post for comments
- A description of your cat, including colour, fur length, sex, age and any distinguishing features
- Details of when and where your cat was last seen, including date and time
- Whether your cat is neutered, microchipped and whether he/she wears a collar
- Whether your cat has any health conditions or is on special medication
We will share your post with other organisations to reach as many people as possible. If you are not able to post to Facebook directly, please email us with the above details.
What should you do?
- Check your whole house. Make sure your cat has not been shut in cupboards or spare rooms.
- Make sure your cat’s microchip details are up to date with the chip company. This will help reunite you quickly if someone finds your cat
- Put up posters. You can download a Poster Pack here.
- Notify your neighbours and ask them to check their sheds and garages. If you can, go with them, your cat will be more likely to respond to your voice
- Notify local vets. Cats are often taken to vets to be scanned for a microchip
- Go out early in the morning and late at night and call your cat. Always be safe and go out with someone else. When it is quiet, they are more likely to hear you. Make sure you take a torch and their treats!
- Look under bushes, your cat may be frightened and hiding
- Leave your cat’s food, litter tray and the contents of your vacuum cleaner outside. Familiar smells can help guide them home
- Contact other animal search organisations such as the RSPCA and Animal Search UK.
- Contact your local council. Although this will be hard, they keep a log of any cats that are found killed on the roads
Try not to give up hope. Cats have been known to be missing for weeks, months, even years and be reunited with their owners. We hope these tips help to reunite you with your lost cat.
From time to time, members of the public may contact Cats Protection for assistance, having found a sick or injured cat. In the first instance you should contact the RSPCA’s 24-hr Vetline number on 0300 123 8022 to report the case before taking the cat to a veterinary practice.
The RSPCA has an agreement with the British Veterinary Association (BVA) to provide initial emergency assessment and care of sick and injured animals. This may include euthanasia.
In all cases the finder must have obtained prior authorisation by calling the RSPCA’s Vetline BEFORE attending the veterinary surgery.
Separately, if you need help please email us with the details of the cat and a picture if possible. We will always respond and do our very best to help. However this does not imply we will be able to take the cat into our care.
If the cat is not injured and you believe it to be a stray please:
- Feed it and provide some clean, fresh water. Please do not give milk, cats are lactose intolerant and can become quite ill.
- If you are unable to take the cat into your house, please provide temporary shelter e.g. a box, covered with a bin liner to make it waterproof and lined with an old towel or blanket, weighted down against the wind or tucked under a bush.
- Check the Lost & Found pages on our website and Lost and Found Facebook page, ask people in the local area and check for lost cat posters.
- If possible, take the cat to a vet to be scanned for a microchip. Vets do not charge for this service.
- Inform rescue organisations and local vets.
Never continually feed a stray cat for months. If you believe the cat is lost or stray please contact a rescue charity. The cat may well have a distraught owner looking for it or it could just be a wise cat making visits for extra treats! NB: Please be aware that we and other animal rescue organisations are unable to collect stray cats immediately, but will place them on a waiting list.
Re-homing a stray cat
If you are willing to offer a home to the stray you have befriended, the cat will need to be on an official Lost and Found Register for 2 weeks, to allow the owner time to come forward. If the cat is not claimed in that time, we are able to offer different support to facilitate a formal adoption of the cat.
Whilst we understand that people might be upset or anxious when calling us, please be aware that our volunteers will terminate any conversation that is abusive or threatening. We will ALWAYS do our very best to help you.