How to Cope with a Missing Pet


When your pet goes missing, it can be as shocking as if they die. The first thing you might be wondering is if they’re safe or suffering, where they could be, or if someone has found them.

You might feel helpless and guilty, or angry at someone else if your pet went missing because of them. However, what you need to know is blaming anyone else for your pet’s absence will only make you feel guilty later on, especially if your pet does return.

If you decide to search for your pet, there are many ways to try looking for a lost pet. First, you may want to hold onto hope that your pet is alive and safe and that they will return someday. But in addition to this, some helpful tips include searching where you last saw your pet and around the local area, telling your neighbors and local shelter that your pet is lost, or putting up missing posters on lampposts and bulletin boards. Make sure the missing posters let everyone know what the pet looks like, the name they have or that they’ll respond to, and your contact information, as well as anything else you think people should know.

You can also put your belongings outside and leave them there, or if it’s your cat that has gone missing, put their litter box outside instead. This will carry the scent of your home and will guide your pet back towards your home. However, don’t leave food outside for your pet to come home to, as it will attract unwanted animals like foxes. Leave their toys, favorite blankets, or something that will hold the scent of home.

Everyone copes in different ways. You may cope by hoping your pet is still alive and well, or if you give up on trying to look for them yourself, you may regard them as dead to say goodbye. You can also ask yourself whether your pet would want you to be sad, and the answer is no; pets do not dwell on the past like us, so your lost pet wouldn’t want you to be worrying about them for so long. You can cope by volunteering at an animal shelter where you are surrounded by other animals you can love.

How to prevent a pet from going missing

If you are not dealing with a missing pet right now, or if you have other pets, there are ways to prevent them from getting lost or stolen. First, make sure they are wearing a collar at all times, especially when they leave the house if they’re a cat, so someone doesn’t mistake them for a stray pet. Make sure the collar has a tag with your contact information on it so it’s clear that you’re the owner of the pet. In addition to this, you can also have your pet microchipped. Make sure they are left home when you’re not there and don’t let them leave your sight when
they’re outside with you.

Unfortunately, you may never know what happened to your pet after they got lost. But what’s important is the life you shared. Don’t dwell on the fact that the pet was taken away too early, but instead remember how special they were to you.

Estelle Ferrari
Estelle Ferrari

Cat lover, blogger, High School Student and adopter of sweet Spencer (a Purrfect Paws rescue cat).