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What is the first thing I need to do when my cat is missing?

Updated: Feb 16

It can be a very hard time when your cats goes missing, most cat owners go into panic mode but they really need to think logically before racing out to find the cat. I have been called out to help search for missing/lost cats only to turn up to the owners address to find friends and family aimlessly wondering around the estate armed with tins of cat biscuits walking up and down the street.

Before going out to search you will need to put a plan into action.

What is your cat like? what is his regular routine and where does he spend his time? Does he travel and visit other houses or does he stay close?

So step one would be to visit the homes/areas where your cats visits, cats have a territory they stick to, so to go missing off this area something must have happened, eg chased off area by another cat. So visit the areas that he goes, visit neighbours and have a conversation with them, explain your cat is missing and could you check their sheds, garages and decking areas. Once you have checked these areas and are sure he is not trapped in a shed or stuck behind anything then you can widen your search.

Please ensure your cat is microchipped then if he goes missing you can call the chipping company and report him as missing, so if he is handed to a vet they can call you instantly.

Before going out searching again, you will now need to plan where you will search and in what order, get leaflets made up and you can hand these out to your local area, best to door knock and speak to people as you hand out leaflets. Work an area to leaflet and poster, mark off on your plan where you have leafletted so you cover all the areas. Keep working out until you have covered and half mile radius, as most cats are found within half a mile of home, so this will be your starting block. Hopefully someone will come forward with some information about your cat, if you hear nothing then you need to continue with working on the next area of your plan.

Make sure you are sharing information with your local community on social media and next door apps, keep sharing regularly as people forget things quickly or presume if they haven't seen any more posts then your cat has been found . Continue these actions until you find your cat.

The most important thing is to stay calm and think clearly, and make that plan. Start at home and work outwards, do not start running all over town every time someone says they have seen a cat the same colour as yours. Get them to send a clear photo if they can as this will save you time and stop you being disappointed when to go to see a cat and it is not yours.

So these would be the first steps I would take to start your search for your missing cat, make sure you note things on your plan such as did you have deliveries the day your cat went missing? Did anything unusual happen on that day? did your cat go missing day or night? just start jotting down other ideas to keep these facts fresh in your mind.

Hope these tips help you in your start of your search for your missing cat, for further lost cat information read more information at

cat laying down outside


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