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It's the thing every pet owner fears most. You stroll into the yard to call your pet and no one comes running. You walk to the side of the house and call again. But he's nowhere to be found. You wonder if he's wandered off somehow - or been stolen.
This is no time for terror, no time for panic. It's time for action. Here are some important suggestions for getting your buddy back.
Your Pet Is Missing
Beware of Pet Scam Artists
Most people are especially sensitive to those who have lost pets. Unfortunately, some aren't, and a variety of scams have sprung up to exploit unsuspecting pet owners. Here are a few guidelines:
One ploy that is fairly common is called the "trucker scam." Someone will call and say they have found your pet. "He must have hopped in my truck at the rest stop. I didn't even realize he had fallen asleep in the back. I am 200 miles from you now. Please send me some money so that I can drive him back to you," the caller usually will say.
You send them a check and never hear from them again. What happened? The scammer picked up your lost-and-found ad and has called your number and described your pet from your write-up.
Remember: People who have actually found lost pets usually do not want anything but to help you get him back. If the finder is not willing to return your pet without a reward, be suspicious. Ask the finder to deliver your animal to you for the reward. If he refuses, he probably does not have your pet. If the person talks ransom, ask for a phone number so you can get back to him. Then call the police, who will tell you how to proceed. If the caller won't give you a phone number, he probably does not have your pet.
Keep Your Best Friend Safe