Posts Tagged ‘lost cats’

The shame of Chicago – Are they killing lost pets before they can be found?

March 9, 2015 30 comments

Having a pet become lost can be so devastating. Whether it be a cat or a dog or a bird, the loss is still the same. The fear and the pain one feels is overpowering. Sometimes it can be difficult to act because we are so immobilized with fear.

There are so many things that can stand in the way of being reunited with a pet, but among them are:

  • Not having your pet microchipped.
  • Waiting to spread the word. Hoping that he/she will come back in an hour or two.
  • Driving around the neighborhood instead of handing out flyers and getting the word out.
  • Not calling the police, shelters and vet clinics in the area to alert them that your dog is missing.

If you live in St Paul and Minneapolis, Minnesota, and you do not do any of the above, you STILL might be lucky enough to be reunited with your pet. Why?  Because Minnesota has a five-day stray hold that requires pets be held at the animal shelter for at least five days to allow an owner to claim them.

And even if you don’t get them after the five-day hold, your pet may still survive because a rescue was able to take him in or the shelter was able to put him up for adoption.

But if you live in Chicago and your pet goes missing, you better hope and pray you have a lot of luck on your side. Why? Because Mayor Rahm Emanual, and the City Council did something pretty low down and dirty. They introduced, and passed, an ordinance to reduce the stray hold in Chicago from five days to three for dogs and zero days for cats.

YES, I said ZERO DAYS for CATS. 

IMG_8244Not only did they reduce the stray hold time for dogs and cats, but they also reneged on their promise to do an information campaign to inform Chicagoans about the change. Thus, most Chicago pet owners have no idea that their lost pets could be killed before they even have a chance to find them.

And, if you have a cat? Good luck. Chicago Animal Care and Control (CACC) will most likely have killed it by the time you start looking. Remember, cats have ZERO days to be saved.

So unless your pet is microchipped and you spread the word immediately that he or she is lost, you may never see your lost pet again. Ever.

Feeling a little pissed off? Good. Because I need you to let the mayor and his friends on the council know how you feel about them choosing to reduce the chances of an owner and their pet being reunited.

There is a petition posted on Change.Org demanding that the Mayor, the City Council and CACC revisit this resolution and reconsider the reduction in stray hold (Thank you Lost Dogs Illinois for the heads up!). They also demand the Mayor and City Council inform the citizens of Chicago about the change.

Let’s tell Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the City Council what we think about them killing lost pets.

And one more thing, get you pet microchipped. NOW.

Don’t wait for CACC to tell you it’s too late and they already killed him.

Infographic demonstrates dangers for pets on July 4th

July 1, 2012 8 comments

One of my biggest concerns this coming week is the upcoming 4th of July holiday. Having been through the awful experience of having lost a dog this past November, I can’t help but worry and wonder – how many pets will be lost this coming 4th of July?

For those of us with dogs who are already afraid, protecting them and keeping them away from fireworks is a no-brainer. We already know that our pets (like my Daisy) suffer greatly when the fireworks begin – panting, drooling, shaking, pacing and hiding, all are symptoms of a dog who is afraid of fireworks.  For owners like us, our goal is to simply keep them safe and get them through the event with the least amount of stress possible.

But the pets I most worry about are the ones who have never displayed symptoms of fear when fireworks have gone off in the past. These are the dogs that many owners think are safe to bring to a fireworks display or to walk at night or in the day as they are going off in the neighborhood. These are the dogs that no one expects to bolt and run, but as statistics show, they do.

That’s why I was so happy to discover that had created and shared the infographic below, showing how many pets are lost on the 4th of July, and how few of them ever make it back home. I encourage you to share it with your friends and to go to the page to find out more information.

Please, please please – encourage your friends and family members to leave their pets at home this 4th of July. Yes, it’s always nice when we can enjoy a beautiful day with our pets, but on this one holiday I ask that you please do your pet, and you, a favor. Keep them home. Keep them safe.

Trust me, you don’t want to go through what I went through when I lost my dog.

(My personal thanks to Neil over at Life with Cats for sharing this.)

Some additional stats:

In 2010 and 2011, Lost Dogs of Wisconsin had 25 dogs posted to their site as lost the day after July 4th.*

Lost Dogs Illinois had 34 dogs that were reported in that same time period.*

*The average number of lost dogs on these sites is about 3-4 per day (these are averages, particular days may actually have more than that, depending on the day).


Lost Dogs – MN

SE MN’s Lost/Found Pet Page

Lost Shelties MN

Lost Dogs of Wisconsin

Lost Dogs Illinois

Lost Dog “Experts”, Lay Off Will Ya?

May 14, 2012 58 comments

My lost dog. Lady.

Recently, a rescue group I know, one that was involved in the search for Lady(not the one I volunteer for), came under attack via social media. I won’t go into all of the details of the reason behind the attack, because that is not the point of this post nor am I looking to judge the rescue or the other person involved. But, I do feel the need to address the people who have injected themselves into this controversy.

Because I am the owner of a former missing dog, and the recipient of this rescue’s kindness, it saddened me to see a flurry of harsh words thrown back and forth by people who supported the rescue and those who did not. But, what made me most angry were the harsh words and condemnation and judgement hurled at a woman whose dog had gotten lost.

I could say that this was a one time event. A situation where strong feelings on both sides just got out of hand and eventually cooler heads would prevail, but I have seen these types of words hurled at other owners on missing dog websites elsewhere, so I know that saying this was a one-time event would not be the truth.

I often see comments like “Why didn’t you do this?” and “Why didn’t you do that?” Or ones like “You must not have cared for your dog since you didn’t do this or that.” Or “So, how DID your dog get lost? Hmmm???” (That one hurled at me when Lady went missing.) My favorite one from this latest incident was the one that inferred the owner deserved to lose her dog because it had gotten loose while out on a tie out.

Wow. I never knew there were so many lost dog experts living among us.

I wonder how many people really knew, before they followed the Little Lady Lost saga, what to do if their dog went missing. I know I didn’t.

Honestly, looking back now, I can’t even remember if I called Lady’s rescue first or her former foster mom. I was in such a complete state of panic. I was shaking. I was frantic and scared and out of my head with fear for Lady’s life. She had gotten away in the busiest and most dangerous part of town. The last thing I could do was think rationally about what to do next. All I seemed capable of doing at the time was roaming the area over and over again, searching for her, calling out her name.

If not for amazing and wonderful people at Minnesota Sheltie Rescue, a group very experienced with finding lost dogs, I would not have known what to do.

I would not have thought to create flyers with Lady’s pictures on them. Or to include a warning to not approach her but to call me instead.

I would never have known about or the huge advantage it afforded me in getting the word out to so many people in my town so quickly.

I would not have even known about traps or how to set them or how to bait them or to put an article of clothing in it so she would be drawn to my smell.

I never would have known the importance of going door-to-door or speaking to people in person so they would want to help me find my missing girl.

If I had not been Lady’s foster first, I would not have even thought to call the rescue first.

I certainly never would have known the importance of calling all the shelters and the police and local businesses to ask them to keep an eye out for Lady.

I never would have thought, or even had the time, to create signs or to post them in strategic intersections so people could see them.

I wouldn’t have known any of these things if not for Minnesota Sheltie Rescue. Not a one. Would you?

It’s so easy to assume that everyone knows what to do because we do. It’s so easy to assume that someone is stupid or doesn’t care for their missing pet because they didn’t do all the right things. It so easy to judge isn’t it?

Well I say I was lucky. I had people around me who knew all that I did not. They did things for me that I could not. I was stupid and ignorant and clueless. I was also scared and worried and not thinking straight.

So I would just like to ask all you lost dog “experts”, not the ones who are experienced in finding lost dogs, but the ones who sit in judgement of those with missing pets… LAY OFF. Why don’t you focus on helping instead of criticizing? Why don’t you educate instead of standing by and judging what others did or did not do? Why don’t you have compassion and kindness and heart?

Yes. I am lucky that Lady came home, and I thank my lucky stars she did, but not everyone is so lucky to have an organization, or the people I had behind me, to help. Let’s remember that before we pass judgement, shall we?

In the meantime, I share a few things that was shared by Lost Dogs-MN. Maybe you could pass them on and help others too.

Little Lady Lost – Absorbing It All

January 5, 2012 23 comments

Yesterday, I received a comment on one of my posts that touched me deeply. I could say I was surprised by this woman’s kind words and actions, but I’m not. It’s actually indicative of many of the kind notes, thoughts, words of encouragement, and prayers I received from so many wonderful people who helped and prayed for Lady’s safe return.

From Audrey:

“I think Lady impacted far more people than many realize.

I was delivering my many boxes to Operation Christmas Child daily, and I would always keep my eyes peeled to see if there was any movement or animals along the streets/roads. It got to be such a habit that I’d be driving in Eden Prairie and would be watching the ditches! I gave the offices of OCC your number just in case anyone else dropping off boxes would comment on seeing a stray dog. I know there are coyotes in that area, so I just kept praying that she would be protected from them.

Sometimes I’d wake up in the night and ask the Lord to protect her at that moment. And then there was the peace….I didn’t know that she’d been found yet, but I could relax…I knew she was safe and would be ok. We have four shelties and I can’t imagine one of them being gone even one night. Two of them were out once for about five minutes, and I was sure my husband was going into cardiac arrest.”

It’s been almost two months since Lady returned. Since that time I have been trying to just absorb the whole experience. It’s a bit overwhelming to have so many people invested in you and your missing dog. So many hopes and prayers – I swear I actually felt them. It was an awesome and overwhelming and larger-than-life experience that has left me thinking about a good many things.

My friend Lynn said the other day that “I count Lady’s story as one of the most significant to me in 2011. The drama of it all and the purely amazing manner in which she was ultimately brought home touched me more than I can describe… Frankly, I personally needed to see all of it unfold. It ‘renewed’ something in me. Hard to explain, but those 12 days made a big impact on me and I was more or less just a prayerful observer from afar.” I don’t think I fully understood it at the time, but I think I do now.

So much of my life was invested in seeing Lady come home, safe and sound, that I never even realized (perhaps because I was in the middle of it all) that so many others were too. But it seems like it’s even larger than that. From some, I have heard it was renewal of faith. For others, the creation of a sense of community, that we were all in this together, helping a little dog get home. For yet others, it was a need for some good news in a world where bad news leads the day. Perhaps there was more meant to be taken from this experience than I can even comprehend. All I know is that this has been a life-changing event for me and I am still trying to take it all in.

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