Missing Cat Advice

If your cat has gone missing:

• First, don’t panic.  Cats often go ‘missing’ and then turn up a short while later. So give them a little time and remember that in general most cats do not go far.  But if your cat has got lost you cannot rely on them to find their own way home, so you need to take action.  Think positively, keep looking and don’t give up hope. 

• Search every room in the house, in cupboards, wardrobes etc and look in places you don’t think they can be.  Check the garden and in garages, sheds and greenhouses.

• Walk round the neighbourhood, calling your cat.  Dusk, when things are quiet, is a good time.  Don’t feel embarrassed, stop regularly and listen, give your cat time to respond to your call.

• Indoor cats.  Is there any way the cat can get back into the house?  If not, put something with a familiar scent (blanket/basket/toys) in a sheltered position outside, leave a cat carrier or box in this location as shelter.  Perhaps leave a light on; the cat might recognise something in the window.

• Ask or leaflet neighbours to check garages/sheds thoroughly or to leave the door open for a while (cats have been known to hide in a corner rather than dash out when the door is opened).  Ask them if you can go into their gardens yourself so you can call the cat.

• Put up lots of posters, preferably with a photograph, details of the cat, place and time when last seen, contact phone number.  On the poster ask people to check garages/sheds.

• Talk to any workmen/gardeners in the area. Tell the person who delivers the mail, milk, newspapers.

• As well as putting up posters close to your home also put them up in places where people gather or visit like the Church Hall, local gym, local schools, the library, fish and chip shop, local post office, pub, railway station, and near bus stops, pillar boxes etc. If you have a car put one in the window.

• Make plenty of copies and post them through doors in your immediate area, including houses at the back of your home.

• Email a copy of poster/photo to Bromley Cats Protection at bromleycats@gmail.com

• Report your missing cat to the local/relevant animal charities, organisations and vets (see the Local Vets and Useful Contacts pages of our website).  

• Get everyone talking about the missing cat. List your cat as missing for free online on lost and found website Animal Search. You could also post your cat as missing on Twitter and Facebook, and on the social media pages of local town groups, animal charities, organisations and vets. If you don't use social media, email Bromley Cats Protection at bromleycats@gmail and we can post your missing cat on our Twitter and Facebook pages for you.

• If you have recently moved within the area, speak to or leaflet neighbours at your previous address to keep an eye out for your cat.

• Write a piece for the local community/parish newsletter, or ask if they will distribute a flyer about your lost cat with the newsletter.

• Cats without collars. If the cat doesn’t have a collar some well intentioned person may think he/she is a stray and be sheltering him/her.  If they see a poster they will realise the cat is a much loved, and owned, pet.

• Microchipped cats. Inform your microchip company, usually Petlog, on 08706 066751 (open 24 hours).  Although the cat is microchipped it is still useful to send copies of posters to vets in case anyone recognises it.  Vets will check with Petlog if they find a microchipped cat.

• Unneutered cats.  Unneutered male cats may go further afield than neutered cats. Unneutered female cats may be chased by toms and therefore get lost.  When your cat returns we would recommend neutering to prevent further problems: www.cats.org.uk/bromley/neutering.

• On a rather sombre note, Bromley Council keep a record of any animal that is found on the roads.  They check for microchips and contact the owner direct. They also record any found cats which do not have a microchip: www.bromley.gov.uk/directory/42/identification_list_-_dead_cats

• Finally, once you and your cat are reunited, don’t forget to ‘undo’ your search activity.  Let those individuals and organisations you have contacted know so that they can update their records and take down (or amend) your posters. Don't forget to remove your post on Animal Search and update your social media posts.