Lost Dog Advice

Help, my dog has gone missing!

This is every dog owner’s worst nightmare come true. What would you do? Of course, your first instinct is to go looking for them straight away, shouting their name – but, is this the best thing you can do to find your dog?

This article will outline a few simple steps you can take to help your missing dog find their way back to you. Dogs run off for various reasons: they are frightened by a loud noise and slip out of their harness; you trip over and drop the lead by accident; they catch the irresistible scent of a dog in season or a squirrel has just caught their eye and they are going to catch it! Whatever the reason, stay calm and stay exactly where you are.

Stay calm and stay where you are...

If possible, you should not leave the location where your dog has gone missing from, the point of escape, whether this is on a walk or from home. Most dogs stay around for a while and generally circle the area. Most people start searching for their dogs straight away, so when the dog returns to the point it went missing from nobody is there to get them.

Eventually, the circles your dog travels gets bigger; this is when a ‘stakeout’ is required. Ask someone to bring you a comfortable chair, food, drink and clothes/blankets depending on the time of year – this is so the owner is able to stay in the area for as long as possible. Statistics show that most dogs come back within the first 24-48 hours. An alternative to sitting outside is sitting in a car, but be mindful that you need to be as close to point of escape as possible.

If your dog escapes from home, keep gates open and offer food. In the best case use a motion-triggered camera so you can check who is actually taking the food during the night.

It is important to note that most dogs usually show up again during late evening or during the very early morning hours, for example between 10 pm and 1 am and again between 4 am and 6 am.

Be sure not to fill the food bowl with a large amount of food but leave only a small amount, an appetiser. The dog should get more of an appetite and become curious if the bowl will be filled again next time it comes back. If you offer too much food the dog may disappear again for a few days until it becomes hungry again.

It is important that people with a connection to the dog do NOT run around looking for them, especially not the owners. The dog will search for familiar scents in order to find its way back, if lots of familiar scents lead in all different directions this will confuse the dog. Owners should stay wherever they lost their dog – strangers can go searching because the dog won’t mind the scent of people that they are not related to it.

Do not call your dog, be patient...

Most dogs – not only the ones from rescue organisations – do not recognise their owner immediately when they show up. So, it is very important that if you see your dog you turn away – DO NOT CALL THEM – make yourself small. BE PATIENT, in case your dog comes a bit closer but again freezes, best to turn and walk in the opposite direction away from the dog. Maybe leave some very high-value tasty treats on the way, so the dog may become curious. These actions are also important for anybody who is helping you search.

This is often very difficult for people – but dogs read our body language much more than anything else. EVERYBODY who is stressed and worried about their lost dog will exhibit lots of anxiety and stress in their body language.

Most dogs – not only the ones from rescue organisations – do not recognise their owner immediately when they show up. So, it is very important that if you see your dog you turn away – DO NOT CALL THEM – make yourself small. BE PATIENT, in case your dog comes a bit closer but again freezes, best to turn and walk in the opposite direction away from the dog. Maybe leave some very high-value tasty treats on the way, so the dog may become curious. These actions are also important for anybody who is helping you search.

“It is important that people with a connection to the dog do NOT run around looking for them, especially not the owners.”

This is often very difficult for people – but dogs read our body language much more than anything else. EVERYBODY who is stressed and worried about their lost dog will exhibit lots of anxiety and stress in their body language.

Also, dogs can smell adrenalin and even our voice changes completely if we are calling them whilst stressed. This combination of an unfamiliar voice, stressed smell and strange body language keeps dogs away. In the worst case they will run away again, in the best case they will recognise you after 10-30 minutes.

They've not come back...

If you do not know the direction in which your dog has run, you can set scent trails to help your dog find their way back to you.

Lost Dog: Laying scent trails back home

What do I need:

  • Scent article of the owner e.g. t-shirt that has been worn – but worn BEFORE the dog went missing and has not been washed. Clothing worn after the dog went missing will contain adrenalin from the anxious owner, which the dog will avoid. If no worn clothes are available, use a pillowcase.
  • If the dog is new to the owner (a few days), if possible, get a scent article from the previous owner.
  • Someone to drive the owner/person (trail layer) laying the scent trail.
  • String to attach the scent article to the trail layer so it can be dragged along the ground.

Procedure:

  • Using the house as the centre point, the trail layer is driven away from the house and dropped off.
  • The trail layer attaches the scent article to their e.g. belt and walks back towards the house whilst dragging the scent article behind them along the ground.
  • This process is repeated, each time starting the scent trail from a different direction. Eventually laying trails in all directions back towards the house.

If the dog has run away from home, these trails should be set in the area and lead the dog back as close as possible to the house/in the garden – with a food bowl.

If the dog has gone missing whilst out on a walk, far away from home, the trails should be set leading the dog back to the point of escape – there should also be a partially filled food bowl here as well. If a motion-triggered camera is available, set one up. This food bowl should be filled twice a day, in the early morning and evening. If it takes a while for the dog to gain trust again, it should learn that this food bowl can be relied upon. If possible, someone should be waiting for the dog and follow the advice outlined above in order not to scare them away.

If no scent article is available, a ‘soup’ can be made by boiling meat/sausage/fish in water. When cooled, put the soup into a large plastic bottle with 2-3 holes in the cap. Whilst laying the trail you need to place a few drops of ‘soup’ every few steps – a lot at the start of each trail to attract the dog and more at points where the trail becomes ‘difficult’, e.g. goes around a corner or crosses a path etc.

The DIRECTION of the trail is VITAL – it must lead back towards the home or the point of escape. Dogs have the ability to smell the age of a trail. They will always follow scents from the oldest to the newest i.e. from the start of the trail laid earlier to the end of the trail laid later. Trails should always lead towards the point of escape or house, NEVER away from it.

What else can I do?

If there are no sightings distribute as many leaflets as possible in the area. Use any forms of publicity/social media e.g. Facebook, lost dog pages etc. Contact local rescue centres, vets, taxi companies, council workers, postal workers etc. to keep a lookout for your dog. A new sighting is necessary to have a focal point from which to repeat the previously described actions.

Do other people walk your dog? Share this advice with them, through awareness and education we can help get our dogs to get back home safe as quickly as possible.

We are here to help

Pettrailer UK offers free tailored search advice and guidance for anyone who has lost a pet. We work closely with our Pettrailer colleagues across Europe who have extensive knowledge in animal search and have actively been involved in reunited lost pets with their families for over 30 years.

Our main aim at Pettrailer UK is to train dogs to become Professional Pettrailers, qualified dogs that have been specially trained to search for lost pets by means of trailing. Our dogs follow the scent trail left by missing animals to help locate them as quickly and safely as possible (pettrailing).

Our search dog trailing teams take part in regular training to keep their skills up to date and undergo assessments to ensure we offer the best possible service to those who need us. Contact us for more information.

Can my dog become a Pettrailer?

Yes! Most people start trailing to give their dogs a job to do and provide them with a mentally stimulating challenge which is fun and motivational for both them and their dog. Pettrailer UK is the only organisation in the UK to provide training based solely on animal search. Our sessions are all-inclusive, so any dog can join us whether big or small, young or old, fearful or aggressive, deaf, blind, 2 or 3 legged…it doesn’t matter.

Simply join us for some pettrailing and mantrailing fun with the option to take your training to the next level and become a Professional Pettrailing team with your own dog and help reunite lost animals with their owners.

Where to find our expert!

Pettrailer is the UK’s only provider for pettrailer training in the UK. PetTrailer UK teaches the Pettrailer style of dog trailing in a structured manner following an established training syllabus and structured assessments for pettrailing and mantrailing developed and practised in Austria and adopted by companies in Germany, Switzerland and now the UK.

For More Information: www.petrrailer.co.uk

Download the K9 app for FREE!

Check out some of our related articles!

Hot Dogs

Instead of worrying about it being too cold, we need to start thinking about if it will be too hot for our dogs.

Read More »

Pettrailer is the UK’s only provider for pettrailer training in the UK. PetTrailer UK teaches the Pettrailer style of dog trailing in a structured manner following an established training syllabus and structured assessments for pettrailing and mantrailing developed and practised in Austria and adopted by companies in Germany, Switzerland and now the UK.

For More Information: www.petrrailer.co.uk

Check out some of our related articles!

Hot Dogs

Instead of worrying about it being too cold, we need to start thinking about if it will be too hot for our dogs.

Read More »

Download the K9 app for FREE!

Download the app for FREE to read more great articles!

Sign up to our newsletter to receive a monthly email with the latest from K9 Nation!

Sign-up to the K9 Nation newsletter to get website access to our collection of articles and find out first when new articles are added!

Privacy Policy

Protecting your data is very important to K9Nation Limited (“K9Nation”, “us”, “our” or “we”). This policy, together with our Terms and  conditions, sets out the basis on which any personal data we collect from you, or that you provide to us, will be processed by K9Nation.

It applies to your use of the website www.K9Nation.uk, the associated ‘K9Nation’ mobile application (together, the “Platform”), all communications between you and us and (unless expressly provided otherwise) all agreements entered into between you and us which involve the collection by, or disclosure to, us of personal data.

Information we may collect about you.

We may collect and process the following data about you:

  • information that you provide by filling in forms on the Platform. This includes information you provide at the time of registering (including, but not limited to, your name, telephone number, address and email address) or at any subsequent point;
  • if you contact us, we may keep a record of that correspondence;
  • your responses to surveys you choose to complete on the Platform from time to time;
  • details of any photographs, comments, posts, or other information you post on the Platform;
  • device-specific information (such as your hardware model, operating system version, unique device identifiers, and mobile network information); and
  • details of your visits to the Platform (such as the full Uniform Resource Locators (URL) clickstream to, through and from the Platform (including date and time); page response times; page interaction information (such as scrolling, clicks, and mouse-overs), and methods used to browse away from the Platform).

Information we may collect about others.

We may collect and process data about others that you provide us with, including (but not limited to) information that you provide by filling in forms on the Platform. You represent and warrant to us that you have obtained the express consent from the individuals whose data you provide us with.

For the avoidance of any doubt, any reference in this privacy policy to your data shall include data about other individuals that you have provided us with.

IP Addresses

We may collect information about your computer, including where available your IP address, operating system and browser type, for system administration. This is statistical information about our users’ browsing actions and patterns, and may be linked to an individual user through other information that is held by us or publically available.

Cookie Policy

The Platform uses cookies to distinguish you from other users. This helps us provide you with a good experience when you use the Platform and also allows us to improve the Platform.

Please note that it is possible to disable cookies being stored on your computer by changing your browser settings. However, the Platform may not perform properly or some features may not be available to you if you disable cookies.

For detailed information on the cookies we use and the purposes for which we use them see our cookie policy.

Where we store your personal information.

The data that we collect about you may be transferred to, and stored at, a destination outside the European Economic Area (“EEA”), including the USA. It may also be processed by staff operating outside the EEA who work for us or for one of our service providers. By submitting your personal data, you agree to this transfer, storing and processing.

Your passwords are stored in K9Nation’s database in encrypted form. We do not disclose your account details, postal or email addresses to anyone except when legally required to do so. We will only hold your information for as long as is necessary for the purpose we collect it for, or for such additional time as may be required by law or any relevant regulatory body.

Security

Sensitive information between your browser and the Platform is transferred in encrypted form using Secure Socket Layer (SSL). When transmitting sensitive information, you should always make sure that your browser can validate the Platform’s certificate. It is your responsibility to keep your password secure.

Unfortunately, the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Although K9Nation will do its best to protect your personal data, we cannot guarantee the security of your data transmitted to the Platform, any transmission is at your own risk. Once we have received your information, we will use strict procedures and security features to try and prevent any unauthorised access.

How we use your information.

We use information held about you (and information about others) in the following ways:

  • to provide you with our services;
  • to reply to requests for information or any other kind of request as indicated by your correspondence;
  • to provide you with information about other goods and services we offer that are similar to those you have already purchased or enquired about;
  • to allow you to participate in interactive features of the Platform when you choose to do so, including interaction with external social networks and platforms;
  • to improve the Platform and ensure the content on the Platform is presented in the most effective manner for you and your computer or mobile device;
  • to administer our Platform and for internal operations ,including troubleshooting, data analysis, testing, research, statistical and survey purposes;
  • to measure or understand the effectiveness of advertising served to you on the Platform; and
  • to notify you about changes to our service, the Platform.

Disclosure of your information

We may disclose your personal information to any business partner, sub-contractor or supplier of K9Nation for the performance of any contract we enter into with you, and/or a member of our group.

We may also disclose your personal information to third parties:

  • in the event that we sell or buy any business or assets, in which case we may disclose your personal data to the prospective seller or buyer of such business or assets;
  • if K9Nation or substantially all of its assets are acquired by a third party, in which case personal data held by us about our customers will be one of the transferred assets;
  • in order to enforce the Terms and Conditions and any other agreement between you and us; or
  • if we are under a duty to disclose or share your personal data in order to comply with any legal obligation or to protect the rights, property, or safety of K9Nation, our customers, or others. This includes exchanging information with other companies and organisations.

Marketing communications and your rights

By registering for an account on the Platform, you give your permission for us to use your personal data for marketing purposes in relation to our products and services. You have the right to ask us not to process your personal data by contacting us.

The Data Protection Act 1998 gives you the right to access information held about you by submitting a request in accordance with the act and is subject to a £10 administrative fee. All such requests should be sent via our contact form.

Changes to this policy

Any changes we make to our privacy policy in the future will be posted on this page, and where appropriate, notified to you by email.

Questions, comments and requests regarding this privacy policy are welcome and should be addressed via our email address: hello@k9nation.dog

Cookie Policy

We use cookies and similar tools on our website, www.K9Nation.uk, and the associated ‘K9Nation’ mobile application (together, the “Platform”) to improve their performance and enhance your user experience. This policy explains how we do that.

What are cookies?

Cookies are small text files which a website may put on your computer or mobile device when you first visit a site or page. The cookie will help the website, or another website, to recognise your device the next time you visit. We use the term “cookies” in this policy to refer to all files that collect
information in this way.

There are many functions cookies serve. For example, they can help us to remember your username and preferences, analyse how well the website is performing, or even allow us to recommend content we believe will be most relevant to you.

Certain cookies contain personal information – for example, if you click to “remember me” when logging in, a cookie will store your user identifier. Most cookies will not collect information that identifies you, but will instead collect more general information such as how users arrive at and use the website.

The cookies we use.

At the date of the last update of this Cookie Policy, the list below represents a comprehensive list of all cookies set on the Platform, but please note that the cookies we use are subject to fairly frequent change. The purposes of the cookies in use, as described below will not change without this policy being updated. However we may not update this policy every time the identity of a particular cookie or the party setting the cookie changes.

 

Category: Strictly necessary

Party: BorrowMyDoggy.com

Purpose: BorrowMyDoggy uses cookies to enable the essential features of the website, such as the navigation system, signing up for the service, subscribing, verifying and messaging.

 

Category: Analytical /  Performance

Parties: Amplitude, Hotjar, Segment, Google Analytics, Optimizely, Improvely

Purpose: These cookies are used to analyse data from users’ visits in order to help us improve the service or create and analyse content tests to allow us to optimise the experience for future users.

 

Category: Functionality

Party: BorrowMyDoggy.com

Purpose: BorrowMyDoggy uses functionality cookies to improve the experience for its users. For example, to save users from having to remember their username, we use a cookie to remember this information.

 

Category: Advertising

Parties: Google Adwords, Facebook, DoubleClick, Affiliate Window, Improvely

Purpose: BorrowMyDoggy uses paid advertising in order to recruit new customers. These paid advertising channels will set cookies so that we can measure the effectiveness of this advertising.

Can you block cookies?

It is possible to block cookies, although remember that if you do choose to disable cookies, you may find that certain sections of the Platform do not work properly.

More detail on how businesses use cookies is available at http://www.allaboutcookies.org.

If you have any queries regarding this Cookie Policy please contact our Privacy Officer at hello@k9nation.dog