There are some unpredictable risks involved in traveling with pets. Most pet owners plan for these but are never prepared for them. Runaways are just one terrifying aspect of traveling with pets and knowing how to handle the stress of losing your pet in an unfamiliar area can help immensely in times of emergency.
All the obedience training in the world can get tossed aside in a new and frightening environment. Your pet will respond, act, and feel differently in new places. Taking all the right precautions will eliminate a large risk of runaways but will not eradicate it. If your pet still manages to get away on you, here are some measures you should take that can lead to your pet’s safe return.
1. Contact the nearest Pet Associations & Businesses. RSPCA, PAWS, Pounds, Veterinarians, & Police are all places you should first inform of your loss. Take advantage of their facilities and knowledge. Many of these organizations exist to protect animals and their owners and provide them with assistance whenever needed. Providing them with pictures of your dog, along with a physical description and any essential information will allow them to recognize your pet should someone bring them into their facilities or report seeing a lost animal.
2. Use word of mouth. When you’re traveling it’s not always possible to print posters and flyers or even to know where to start posting them. Telling people you meet to keep their eyes open and contact you is a great strategy to employ. Postmen, delivery professionals, bikers, and joggers are all types of people who see and know the town far more than you and are great people to notify of your loss.
3. Search like crazy and make noise. If you are in a city, driving your vehicle around with windows down and calling your pet may seem silly, but animals’ hearing is far better than our own. Your pet may hear you and come running. Another trick is to use one of their toys to call them back to you. A familiar sound and voice are just two tools that can give your pet the keys to making it back to safety.
4. Stay positive and don’t give up. Surprisingly many pets never make it home because their owners were not willing to keep up the search. It’s up to you to decide whether finding your pet or continuing your travels is more important. Even if you are not willing to give up, the passage of time can be discouraging. Keeping positive will help you keep up the search.
All in all, there are no guarantees that your efforts will result in the return of your pet. Remaining hopeful and consistent, are you best bets to seeing your pet again. Dealing with runaway pets while traveling is a nightmare that is unpredictable. You can, however, diligently seek to reduce the risk of runaways through proper training, care, and preparations. In any case, these four steps will greatly help in case of an emergency.