What to do if you find a cat
Derby Branch of Cats Protection gets many phone calls and messages to our Catline every week from worried members of public reporting stray cats that they have found, so here are some things you can do:
If the cat is hungry, please feed it. If possible, provide some outdoor shelter such as a covered tea chest or access to a shed.
Enquire: Enquire within the neighbourhood in case the cat is new to the area.
Microchip: If possible, please take the cat to your local vet who will scan it for a microchip which can immediately identify cat with owner and prevent unnecessary work. The surgery will not normally charge for this. If you have problems approaching a nervous or aggressive cat, please contact us as in the majority of cases our fieldworkers can catch such cats.
Collar: If the cat is wearing a collar, get an ID barrel for it and put a little note inside asking the owners to contact you. If the cat is not wearing a collar, try putting on a safety clasp collar with an ID barrel as above. Attempt this for 2 or 3 days in case the collar comes off. Alternatively, you can obtain a paper collar from the Branch. Please contact us via email or our Facebook page.
Leaflet Drop: If the cat is not microchipped and you have found it in your neighbourhood, produce some leaflets and put them through all the local letterboxes, for example those neighbours who live to the front, sides and rear of your property. This leaflet should contain contact details (landline, mobile, email address), description/colour of the cat and when and where found. It is surprising how far a cat can wander or how little you know about the pets your neighbours have. This sort of publicity is often very successful. Place copies of the leaflets on available notice boards such as local shops/post office/newsagents/vets etc. Also on your gate, in your front window or on a few local lamp posts.
Contact all your local vets to ask if anyone has reported a missing cat of this description. They often have a lost and found book and will add your details. You can also ask to place one of your leaflets on their notice board or in the surgery waiting room.
Advertise: You can place a FOUND advert in the Derby Telegraph for free.
You can do this online at www.thisisderbyshire.co.uk, click on Place an Ad and choose the Notices section or by phoning 01332.411888. Many areas also have local papers that will carry lost notices.
There are also useful national websites you could try such as www.animalsearchuk.com and www.catchat.org
Useful local contacts:
Cats Protection Derby Adoption Centre, Long Lane, Dalbury Lees - 01332 824950 www.derby.cats.org.uk
The Ark Rescue Centre, near Ashbourne - 01335 300494 / 300825 www.ashbourneanimalwelfare.org
RSPCA - Derby and District Shelter - 01332 344620
PDSA - Derby Veterinary Centre - 01332 345771
It is important to try and carry out all the above. Every effort should be made to find the rightful owner before placing the cat on a waiting list for shelter or rehoming.