What to do if you have found a stray lost dog in Kent

What to do if you have found a stray lost dog in the Kent area.

So there you are minding your own business when you spot a lost dog on the loose. Here are a few tips on what you can do to help the straying dog.

Before containing the dog check your surroundings and listen to see if you can hear anyone shouting on their lost dog. Please be careful asking passers by if they know the dog, make sure the dog recognises them and is definitely their dog. Pet theft is on the rise in Kent.

Containing The Dog

1. If you approach the dog and he/she bears their teeth with ears back, walk away slowly and do not look at the dog directly in the eye (most dogs feel as if you are challenging them when you stare in their eyes. If a dog is frightened then they can instinctively be defensive) speak softly so see if the dogs demeanor changes but again do not look them in the eyes.

2. If the dog is on the path near a main road then please approach with caution, if the dog is frightened he/she may run into oncoming traffic to get away from you, always be aware of your surroundings.

3. If the dog runs away from you then try one of these things;

~ Try saying a command like “come”, “sit” or “stay”. Most dog owners speak to their dogs and teach them basic commands.

~ Try kneeling down on the ground, pointing to the floor and pretending that there is something exciting there. A lot of dogs are curious and will want to come over to see what you have.

~ If the dog keeps running then do not chase, instead skip to number 6. Even though you do not have the dog secure it’s most likely an owner is actively searching for their dog and will be ringing around local authorities and vets.

4. If the dog seems friendly and is wearing a collar then kneel down and carefully check to see if the collar has an id tag or barrel attached. Some owners write on the inside of collars with pens. Try to not lean over or tower over the dog as this can be quite intimidating. Speak gently to the dog, reassuring them you mean no harm.

5. If the dog isn’t wearing a collar and you don’t have a lead to hand then try and use anything you can to use as a lead. For example a belt, bag handle or a tshirt, but please be very careful when placing anything around the dogs neck as this is a sensitive area and you do not want to damage or hurt the dog in any way. You can also try encouraging the dog to follow you to a secure space away from roads and highly populated areas.

Check for injuries, if the dog is seriously injured and needs veterinary treatment, don’t waste any time in taking the dog to your nearest veterinary practise.

After Containing

If you have managed to leash the dog then go for a walk around the area, you may even meet the owner just around the corner frantically looking for their dog.

6. Contact your local warden, you can search this website to find the phone number and website of your local dog warden Local Council

It is a legal requirement to contact your local council, failure to do so whilst taking a lost dog home could land you in serious trouble from authorities as you could be accused of theft.

7. Take a photo of the dog (hiding the gender and any distinguishing features in the photos) and place on our facebook group ALFIK and as many social media sites you can. By hiding the gender and distinguishing features on the photo this will ensure the correct owner comes forward through your post. Please do not post your phone number on social media as you may not be guaranteed to get the owner calling.

8. You can also take the dog to your local vet who will be able to check the dog for a microchip. However if the dog is not chipped most vets will not have the means to take the dog from you so the dog warden will have to be called. Search for your local vet here

9. If you have decided to take the dog home then please be mindful as you will be taking the dog into unfamiliar territory, dogs can be unpredictable when scared.

10. Please bear in mind you cannot just keep the dog if you have found a dog you must report to your local dog warden. You can however give your details to the warden if you have a vested interest in rehoming the dog if no owner is located, they can guide you through that process.

11. We cannot chip check stray dogs if the dog warden is on shift. We also have no kennels to hold dogs overnight. For emergency contact please text 07803322297.

12. Our facebook group has a lot of members who share and look out for matching Lost/Found animals Animals Lost and Found in Kent Ltd You never know, an owner searching for their missing dog may have posted on there already.

Whatever you do do not put yourself or any other member of the public in any danger whilst handling an animal. When scared and overwhelmed by their surroundings dogs can be very unpredictable. We do not take any responsibility if you are injured.