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What to Do if Your Dog Runs Away From Home

What to Do if Your Dog Runs Away From Home

The Nightmare of Every Dog Parent

Picture this: You’re enjoying a nice afternoon at home with your furry best friend, when suddenly, the doorbell rings. In the commotion, your dog dashes out the open door and disappears down the street. Your heart sinks as you realize your beloved pup has run away. It’s the nightmare of every dog parent, and it’s happened to me more times than I’d like to admit.

According to Dogster, this is a common occurrence, with many dogs like to bolt out the front door or away from their owners. It’s especially common in younger dogs, but some pups never outgrow this dangerous behavioral problem. If your dog is running off at all, it’s a behavior you want to stop before it results in your dog or someone else getting hurt.

Stay Calm and Act Quickly

When your dog takes off running, your first instinct is probably to panic and chase after them. But according to The Dog Wizard, this is the last thing you should do. Chasing your dog will only cause them to run faster, either because they think it’s a game or they get scared and want to get away. Instead, you need to stay calm and focused on getting your pup back home safely.

Time is of the essence, so the first thing you should do is call out your dog’s name in a friendly, high-pitched tone. Shake a bag of their favorite treats or try to entice them with a squeaky toy. If your dog is naturally friendly, you can also try to get nearby strangers to help lure them back. Just be careful not to chase or startle them, as that may cause them to run even farther away.

Secure the Area and Spread the Word

Once you’ve tried to coax your dog back with treats and toys, it’s time to take a more strategic approach. If your dog is still in sight, try to secure the area by closing any nearby gates or doors to prevent them from escaping further. In a more urban setting, you may even be able to block off alleyways to contain them in a smaller space.

Next, it’s time to start spreading the word. Create some lost dog flyers with a recent photo of your pup and their key details, like breed, size, and any distinguishing features. Post these flyers around your neighborhood, making sure to hit up high-traffic areas. Don’t just focus on your immediate area – as Family Handyman notes, lost dogs can sometimes travel miles from home.

You should also contact your local animal shelters and veterinary clinics to let them know your dog is missing. Provide them with a detailed description and photo, and be sure to check back regularly in case your pup is brought in. Don’t forget to post on social media as well, using any neighborhood-specific groups or apps like Nextdoor to reach as many people as possible.

Use Scent to Lure Your Dog Back Home

Dogs have an incredible sense of smell, and you can use this to your advantage when trying to lure your pup back home. According to Dogster, dogs don’t always recognize the outside of their home, so providing familiar scents can help guide them back.

Try placing your dog’s bed, favorite toys, or even unwashed clothes outside your home. The combination of their own scent and yours can help draw them back, especially if they’re within sniffing distance. You can also try setting out a humane trap baited with irresistible treats, which can be a effective way to catch a scared or skittish dog.

Don’t Lose Hope and Keep Searching

I know it can feel absolutely heartbreaking and hopeless when your dog runs away, but as Family Handyman points out, lost dog reunions can happen days or even weeks later. So don’t give up! Keep those flyers up, continue checking the local shelters, and utilize any online tools or apps dedicated to finding lost pets.

You can also offer a reward to incentivize people to come forward with information about your missing pup. And be sure to check places like Craigslist, in case someone has taken your dog and is trying to rehome them. With persistence and a little bit of luck, you’ll be back snuggling your furry friend in no time.

In the meantime, I hope you’ll visit for more tips and resources on caring for your canine companion. Dogs may have a knack for getting themselves into trouble, but with the right precautions and quick action, you can minimize the risk of them running away and ensure they always find their way back home.

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