Guide for Owners of Lost Pets

  • Be prepared to accurately describe your lost or found pet, including breed, sex, age, color, and any distinguishing markings.

  • Report all lost and found pets to the City of Boston Animal Shelter by calling 617-635-1913 or 617-635-1800 right away!

  • Call the Animal Rescue League of Boston at 617-426-9170 and the MSPCA shelter at 617-522-5055.

  • Seek help from friends, family and neighbors and search the area where the pet was lost.

  • Post flyers in your neighborhood, preferably with a photograph including a physical description of the pet as well as information when and where the pet was last seen. See the sample flyer infomation provided below.

  • Visit your local animal shelters and supply them with flyers too.

  • Take out an ad in your local newspaper or utilize cable public access to report the loss of your pet.

  • Try not to lose faith! Remember, the more aggressive your efforts are looking for your lost pet, the more likely you and your pet will be reunited.

As a responsible pet owner, it is important to be prepared for such unfortunate situations.

  • Identify your pet! A collar and tags with proper identification is your pet's ticket home. Licensed dogs are more likely to be quickly reunited with their owners by tracing the information on the tag. Personal information tags worn on collars with owner's name, address, and phone number are also very helpful.

  • Take a photograph of your pet and write down a detailed description of your pet. It is a lot easier to accurately describe your pet before it becomes lost. This information is invaluable to shelters when identifying your pet, especially if it is a mixed breed.

What to post on your lost pet flyers:

  • Pet's name

  • Breed (or breeds, if more than one)

  • Sex

  • Age

  • Weight

  • Color (include color pattern if one exits)

  • Collar (include color and type)

  • License tag number, town, year information

  • Rabies tag number, year

  • Physical description: fur type, ears, tail, list any distinguishing marks

  • Date lost

  • Location last seen

  • Owner's name

  • Report all found cats to the City of Boston Animal Shelter at 617-635-1800, the Animal Rescue League of Boston at 617-426-9170 (shelter office) & the MSPCA at 617-522-5055.

Why Report a Found Animal:

  • The owner is probably looking for their pet. Failure to report the found pet or report it with incorrrect descriptions will prevent a reuinion to his owner.

  • You do not know the behavior or health history of that animal and may be putting your family in danger.

If You Find a Lost Pet:

  1. As required by law citizens must immediately report all dogs found in the Boston area to Boston Animal control. One can also make reports with your local humane societies i.e. Animal Rescue League of Boston and MSPCA.

  2. Upon request, Boston Animal Control will pick up the dog and transport it to the City's kennel facility.

  3. Dogs wearing identification, such as a City Of Boston license, can be quickly returned to owners once the tag is traced and owners contacted. All dogs are held for a mandatory seven day period in order to allow owners time to claim their pet.

  4. Reports of cats found in the Boston area may be made with your local humane societies.