“Chaos” Reclaimed at Shelter Thanks to Tip From Facebook Follower

lost dog recovered held by child

“Chaos” reunited with his “big brother”

This sweet pooch shown here with his happy “big brother” had escaped the yard and been picked up and taken to Franklin County Dog Shelter in Columbus, OH. His family had posted his picture on the Pet FBI Ohio Facebook page. Fortunately, Nicole, one of our Facebook followers, spotted him at the shelter, remembered his post and alerted the family. A happy reunion ensued.

CONVENTIONAL WISDOM: Most lost pets are reunited through a shelter.
REALITY CHECK: Relatively few strays are reclaimed before being euthanized or adopted out to others.

According to a study done by the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) only 17-30% of dogs in shelters are ever reclaimed by their owners and only 2-5 % of cats. Why so few? Basically it’s a question of timing. At most shelters, dogs and especially cats can be held for only a limited time. If the pet’s family isn’t there at the critical time…. that pet will either be put down or adopted out. Most shelters do not post their intakes to a public database. Most owners cannot check the shelters as often as necessary and it is generally useless to just call or even send a flyer. You must go to a shelter in person and see for yourself. In a large urban shelter there may be hundreds of cats and / or dogs impounded at any time. Please encourage your local shelter to take advantage of the free, searchable database at

Shelter Posting Leads to Unlikely Recovery

cat in arms of dad

Beating the odds, thanks to shelter’s policy of posting to

Kip, shown here in the arms of his Dad, had been missing for almost two months. A Good Samaritan found him and brought him in to Capital Area Humane Society (CAHS) , an open admission shelter in Columbus, Ohio. Fortunately, CAHS, has some enlightened policies. For one thing, they post stray intakes on the free public database at The Pet FBI lost and found pet database is the core of this web site and if all shelters took advantage of it, they would increase their recovery rates and lower their euthanasia rates. They would also spare themselves the trouble of escorting distraught pet parents in search of their lost pet through one or more holding areas.

Kip’s Dad had been checking the database and that’s how he discovered – almost two months after this beautiful kitty went missing – that he was at the shelter. Without the posting he would have had to visit the shelter regularly for almost two months. This would have been virtually impossible. For one thing, the shelter is on the other side of town from where he lives.

There is often an interval of many weeks or months before a cat “surfaces” and is brought to a shelter. A cat that is lost is inclined to keep a low profile and elude people until it is really desperate. By that time the cat’s family may have already given up! So Kip really beat the odds – thanks to CAHS’s policy of posting to and his Dad’s persistence. As an added bonus, Kip was neutered and microchipped, another enlightened protocol at CAHS.

If you are reading this, please encourage your local shelter to take advantage of Pet FBI’s free database. All reports are strictly managed by the poster and can be edited, updated or inactivated at any time.