When your cat hasn't come home for a time you consider a little worrying then here are some steps you can take to try and find them or encourage them home.
1. Check your home thoroughly, under duvets, under beds, in cupboards, behind things, attic or cellar spaces, washing basket, in boxes, on top of wardrobes etc. Cats mainly like warm places, remember they are crepuscular, meaning they are most active at dusk and dawn and do like to sometimes find unusual places to nap.
2. Leave familiar smells outside your home, examples could be the cats used cat litter, the contents of the homes vacuum cleaner bag, items of clothing/footwear (preferably unwashed & not new) such as training shoes insoles, bedding (low to the ground) and cat bedding (preferably the smellier the better!)
3. Check outside and around your property, sheds, out buildings, under cars, gardens and conservatories.
Check in with your closest neighbours and any near-by houses you know your cat might visit regularly. Remember your cat maybe getting a bite to eat and cuddle in more places than you realise. Most of all be polite and respectful to people when calling, because you want them to keep an eye out, not be grumpy with you, also be mindful of what time you intend to visit them.
4. It is best to search at the quietest times like dawn or evening, don't forget to take your spectacles, hearing aid or any other such items that may impede your search without them. Take a torch light (remember your mobile phone may have this feature). Take some familiar items to your cat that make a sound, like cat biscuits (tin), cat toys/old collars with bells or a child's toy, again be mindful of not making too much noise at unsociable hours.
5. Check in with local vets, especially if your cat is not micro-chipped. At time of writing it is not compulsorily in the UK to have your cat microchipped unlike the law for dogs which states they should be.
6. Post on local social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Next Door and the like. Firstly share to your personal profile then look to share to pages and sites that cover the area where you live. Your message should include the following:
*A good clear (not too small) photo of your cat, add two or three images of different angles if you have them.
*The cats name and roughly where the cat went missing from, you don't have to give your exact address just your road or general area.
*the date when they went missing.
*A contact number or email address. This is important if you want people to contact you directly and quickly. Keep track of all the main local social media sites you post on and check your private messages regularly. Note it is easy to miss peoples comments etc, especially on multi-platforms, so please consider adding a phone number or email.
*Make sure your post is on a public setting (shareable), for Facebook go > Settings > Who Can See Future Posts > Public.
At the end of this article are a list of local Facebook pages and groups you could share to.
Be sure to follow up by letting people know when your cat is found by posting this on ALL the sites you shared to, other than it is the courteous thing to do, it also lets people know not to contact you if they see your cat around!
7. Many people are not on social media so putting up posters, putting cards in shop windows/community noticeboards and flyers in houses in the area are also positive steps to take. As with the social media post make sure they contain a photo, the cats name, what area they are missing from, whether they are microchipped or not, when they went missing and contact info.
Here are some local social media sites that you may wish to post to:
Lost Cats Brighton
Missing Cats of Peacehaven
Cats of Woodingdean, Rottingdean - Saltdean
Saltdean Zone Group
Newhaven & Seaford Zone
Some info referenced from an image notification by DCS.
Main image is Wendy, found through our social media and comes courtesy of Liliana Mistretta.
Here is a found cat post from January 2019