Lost or Found Cats

Is your cat missing? Act Quickly!


Contact your local animal shelter(s) and animal control officer


File a lost cat report with your ACO (usually through your police department) and area shelter(s). Even if you suspect your pet will return, there is no harm in making these notifications. If a neighbor or ACO picks your animal up and brings them to the shelter, your lost report should help expedite your reunion. You can fill out this form and email it to us. Please include a photo if possible.


If you do not know what shelter your town uses, ask at your town hall or police department. You can also view a full list of animal control officers and shelters by town online here.


Other Actions to Take


  • Leave something with a familiar scent on it out where your pet can find it. A litter box, pet bed or blankets are great items to leave on your porch, deck, or driveway. Put out food - the smellier, the better.

  • Post on Facebook - we highly recommend the Maine Lost Cat Recovery page. This group can also assist you with making a very effective lost cat flyer.  Also post to the Facebook pages of your local animal shelter, other rescue groups, and even nearby veterinarians. The more people who see your posts, the better the chances of getting your lost pet home.

  • Post on Craigslist, but please be very careful who you trust on this site.

  • Hang eye-catching flyers with your pet information and photo. Post within a several mile radius of your home. Also distribute it to neighbors, local stores in your community, and vet offices.

  • Borrow, rent, or buy a humane trap. Some shelters loan traps. Hardware stores sell traps and sometimes have them for rent. Your local ACO may be able to loan a trap.

  • Search your neighborhood frequently, especially at night. Pets who are scared often hide during the day. Bring a flashlight and some food.  Look under porches, in sheds, and in garages. Talk to your neighbors and ask them to keep an eye out too.

  • Indoor cats who are lost tend to be very scared and stay close to home. Outdoor cats are more used to wandering, but they are also more likely to become trapped in garages, basements, sheds, etc.

  • Visit all area shelters. Animals can cover a lot of distance and may have wandered into a different town. Keep visiting the shelters - you never know when your pet will turn up, and many shelters have a very short stray hold period.

Never give up!

Have you found a cat that looks like it has lost its way home?


  • Many of the tips above still apply.

  • Check for a collar that may have identifying information.

  • Contact the ACO, shelters, and veterinary offices.  Many shelters and veterinary offices can scan for a microchip. If you cannot shelter the animal yourself, please bring it to a shelter or ask the ACO to collect the animal. Please click here to identify the appropriate shelter to which you should bring the animal (and be sure to call the shelter first).

  • Post to your Facebook page and Maine Lost Cat Recovery.

  • If someone contacts you claiming they own the animal, it’s ok to request proof of ownership. Most people have photos of their pets on their phones.

  • While HART believes in an indoor-only lifestyle for cats, many people have cats that go outdoors. If you see a cat outside and the cat does not seem ill, injured, or distressed and it is in a safe area, please give the cat a chance to return home on its own. If you continue to see the cat or the situation deteriorates, then please help the cat get to safety.