Losing your pet is a very traumatic experience. Here are some helpful tips that will increase your chances of finding your pet.
Visit our Care Centers daily.
AC&C takes in lost pets and stray animals every day (except holidays) at our Brooklyn, Manhattan and Staten Island Care Centers (See Hours and Locations). Lost pets and stray animals are held for 72 hours in order to provide you with enough time to go to our Care Centers and find your pet. If no one claims them after the 72 hours, the animal is evaluated for placement options. When you arrive at the Center, go to the front counter and tell the staff member that you are looking for a lost pet. A staff member will escort you through the building. At the Center, take your time to look at every cage; this will eliminate the possibility of you passing a cage that your pet may be in.
Search our Website's Found Pets Database.
Pictures and/or descriptions of animals that have been found and brought to our Care Centers are posted on our website's Found Pets Database daily. If you see an animal that fits the description of your lost pet, visit the identified Care Center to reclaim your pet.
When searching our Found Pets database, select the appropriate Animal Type only and click on "search". Leaving the other fields empty will maximize your search results. If you do not see a match in the animals listed in the Found Pets database, scroll to the bottom of the page and click on "Show Pets Found by the Public", near the bottom of the page. This search will provide you with the Found Pets reports made by those who have found lost pets, but have chosen to keep the pets rather than turn them into the Care Center. If you still do not find your lost pet on this database, you should then file a Lost Pets report.
File a Lost Pet Report with AC&C.
A report filed with AC&C will be entered into an online database that searches our computer records and will send you information if there is a match. This report will be valid for 60 days and will continue to send you information if applicable. This will also enroll you in a program made possible by the ASPCA, Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals and AC&C, where volunteers will actively assist in the search for your pet in both AC&C and third party lost and found resources.
When filing the Lost Pet report, please remember to upload a photo of your lost pet (a clear full body photo, if possible). Also, please leave the top check-off box unchecked so to allow a copy of your report to be sent to AC&C. If you check this box, our Lost and Found Volunteers will not be able to reach you if a match is made.
Instructions on How to File a Lost Pet Report
You should file a Lost Pet report only after making sure your lost pet is not already in our Found Pets database. Once you have completed the search and still have not found your lost pet, you may click on the appropriate link below, which will take you to the Lost Pet Registration.
- Complete the form; please be as detailed and accurate as possible.
- Special Color Instructions - Based on the color chart below:
Primary Color - please place your pet's primary color in the "Please describe animal" box.
Secondary Color - please place your pet's secondary color in the "Mostly What 2nd Color" box.
- Please do not check the box marked "Do NOT share my info with any Care Center". This will prevent our volunteers from reaching you should a match be found.
- Upload a photo of your pet.
- Click "submit request."
You are ready to file a Lost Pet Report!
File A Lost Pet Report:
Report a Lost Cat
Report a Lost Dog
Report a Lost Other Pet
Other Tips on Finding Your Lost Pet
- Post flyers within a 2-mile radius of where your pet was last seen and around your neighborhood. Your flyer should include a detailed description of your pet, pictures and your contact information. Post this flyer with permission in as many places around the neighborhood as possible: pet shops, veterinarian and doctors offices, supermarkets, police precincts, bulletin boards, bus stops, taxi services, laundromats, delivery people, schools, etc.
- If someone responds to your flyer, having possibly found your animal, check it out even if it seems too far away to possibly get your pet. Animals have been found miles from where they are originally lost. Do not forget to remove all flyers once your pet is found.
- If your pet is microchipped, notify the microchip company immediately.
- If your dog is licensed in NYC, call the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene by dialing 311.
- Send a flyer to all AC&C New Hope partners and community Care Centers.
- Place an ad in local and state newspapers, as well as in online publications.
- Visit the sites listed below to post a report of your missing pet.
- Some lost pet tips from Missing Pet Partnership.
Reclaiming an Animal That is at the AC&C Care Center:
If you believe that your pet is at our Care Center, you must come personally during business hours (See Hours and Locations). You need to bring the following information with you:
- The animal ID number from our website
- Valid governmental approved photo ID
- Proof of current address
- Proof of ownership of your pet, such as vet records, adoption papers, purchase papers, NYC dog license, etc.
- If you were evicted, bring your eviction paperwork
If your pet has not been spayed/neutered, it will be required to be so. Additionally if you live in NYC, your dog will be required to get licensed.
If you do not have any proof of ownership, you must provide two notarized letters from two different people with the following information:
- Name, address, and telephone number of the owner; how long the owner has owned the pet; the pet's name; breed; gender (whether altered or not); color; and age.
- You as the owner must also bring in pictures of the animal(s).
- You as the owner must sign an AC&C "Owner Certification" form if the above documentation is accepted.
If your pet is at a Care Center, fees may apply to reclaim your pet. These fees may vary based on the time your pet has been in the Care Center.