So… Someone accidentally left the door or window open – and your cat got out. Just like that – Gone. When this happens, it can quickly cause panic mode. But don’t freak out just yet. If your cat goes missing, there are some super simple things that can be done. We can’t just wait (especially for an indoor only kitty) until our little magically re-appears… it’s best we do what we can to help facilitate a happy homecoming.
Studies show that indoor cats live an average of 15-17 years, while outdoor kitties only live 3-5 years. These numbers pop in my head anytime one of our kitties come close to escaping. This is why taking action quickly is important.
6 things you can do if your cat goes missing
- Call the microchip database. If your kitty is microchipped, call the database to let them know your little one is missing. This may seem like a no brainer – but it’s something that can be easily forgotten in a panic.
- Put up flyers with an EASY way to contact you. Guys… this is how we were able to find our Mama girl many years ago when she escaped to the great outdoors. After 5 days I received a text from a neighbor at 11:30pm saying he had seen her around his house. We jumped out of bed and were able to find her in some bushes right across from his house. SO! Take current pictures of your cats right meow! Make a flyer with a clear, current photo of your missing kitty and add your best contact number. Studies show that indoor kitties usually only explore within a few blocks – so make a map and post your flyers in the most visible areas.
- Talk to your neighbors. Knock on your neighbor’s door and let them know your cat is missing. Ask if you can check their yard, under their bushes or in their garages and sheds. And if you don’t know (or talk to) your neighbors, this is the purrrfect excuse to start!
- Look in all nearby bushes, trees and sheds. When indoor cats get out, they will often look for a place to hide. We found Mama scared to death, under a bush outside of our neighbors house – a bush we had walked by every day she was missing. It’s also important to remember that cats are most active at dawn and dusk, so taking walks at this time of day can be helpful as well.
- Leave out familiar smells. Cats have more than 200 million scent sensors – and can smell food and familiar fragrances from crazy far away! Leave out smelly wet food or even used litter to help a lost kitty sniff her way home.
- Call the local vets, humane society and shelters. When kind people find a cat roaming free they usually bring it to a local facility that cares for animals. If you notify them that your kitty is missing, they will call you if someone brings her in.
Keep searching and don’t give up hope. Cats are quick, stealthy and have impressive survival instincts!