Missing Pet Partnership, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, needs your help. We don’t have the animal recovery equipment that we need to help recover the amount of pets reported lost here in Seattle. The best way I can illustrate this is by telling the story about Andre.
Andre was an Italian Greyhound who weighed just 17 pounds at the time of his escape on December 5, 2010. Andre’s owners did the usual things, such as placing 8.5 by 11 inch fliers on telephone poles in the area. Six days later on December 11th Andre’s owner found out about MPP’s lost pet services. They were interested in a search dog but when we learned that Andre was skittish and had been seen running in fear in the neighborhood, we advised them that a search dog was not the best tool. Instead, MPP rented the family a humane trap, a wildlife camera, and giant neon REWARD LOST DOG posters.
As soon as they put the neon posters up, the family received a tip that Andre was seen several blocks away. So we moved the humane trap to the new location and an MPP volunteer staked out the house with the trap. The volunteer reported that while Andre was trying to enter our humane trap, he was too tall! Being an Italian Greyhound, Andre was too light (17 pounds) to trip our giant humane dog trap so we had set up our biggest humane cat trap. We hoped it would be tall enough, but it wasn’t. Poor Andre (hopefully not insulted that we were trying to catch him in a tall cat trap) kept tripping the door as he crouched and tried to get inside! Clearly, Andre was hungry. He tried his best to crawl into our cat trap and we would’ve trapped him at that point if only we’d had a humane trap that was the correct size!
Thankfully, MPP was able to devise a new plan. We learned that Andre liked to go for a ride in cars so we advised the owners to pull up to the trap area in their car, open the door, sit quietly, and wait. We stressed that they SHOULD NOT call Andre and that instead they should remain silent. Calling a panicked dog, especially one whose had people calling after it, becomes a trigger that will cause panicked dogs to bolt and run instead of come! Andre’s family parked and sat silently. After about five minutes, Andre showed up. He checked out their car for a few moments, probably caught a whiff of familiar smells, and then jumped right in, ready to go home!
Sadly, MPP still does not have the correct size humane trap to capture a medium sized / lightweight dog like Andre. Dogs like Andre deserve to be home for Christmas. They deserve to snuggle under soft covers by a crackling fireplace surrounded with Christmas gifts. Please donate to Missing Pet Partnership so that we can purchase the equipment we need and help bring more lost dogs like Andre back home!