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  • Writer's pictureCaryl Wolff

Finding Stolen Dogs – Following up

Updated: Jan 21, 2022

Finding Stolen Dogs – Following up

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This article is provided free as a service and may be reprinted IN PRINT ON PAPER ONLY in its entirety exactly as written with the following wording:

Copyright 2007-2022 Caryl Wolff All rights reserved. Print reproduction is granted in entirety.

I will be happy to send you a PDF file – FREE OF CHARGE – that is formatted and ready for publication in booklet form (including pagination, Table of Contents, and log sheets), so that you can print it out for distribution. Please email me at I do ask that you link to or on any Websites, newsletters, blogs, or email discussion groups.

PLEASE NOTE: This article is all the information I have. I understand that this a difficult time for you if your dog was stolen. I regret that I cannot give you any further information or cannot help find or reunite you with your dog. I welcome emails that say “thank you for your information,” but please don’t email or call me to ask for further assistance because I can’t help you any further.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

I welcome any additions you may offer. Please email suggestions.

Now that the preliminaries are out of the way, we can get to the article itself.

Following up

Finding stolen dogs, when you are following up — don’t give up! Here’s some suggestions on how to follow up.

  • Write letters to your local papers and continue to post on Craig’s List to let the general public know that your dog was stolen and implore them to watch their dogs carefully and report any suspicious activity to law enforcement.

  • Check newspapers daily for at least three months for Found ads and Dogs for Sale ads for a dog resembling your dog’s description. If your dog has not been neutered or spayed, then it may be used in a breeding program.

  • Look for ads for puppies for sale if your dog is not spayed or neutered. Gestation period for dogs is 60-64 days, and For Sale ads will start appearing soon after that. Check your newspaper for Puppies For Sale that may match your dog’s description 60-120 days after s/he is missing.

  • People may keep animals several weeks or months before contacting you or turning them in to a shelter.

  • Call police departments several times. Personnel changes, and there are new shifts of personnel on duty and people are always going on or returning from vacation.

  • If your city has a cable channel, watch that for listings and refer to impound numbers and impound dates when asking at the city shelters.

  • If you have lots of money, then buy TV or radio commercials or a billboard.

  • Call dead animal pickup for your area – it’s always a possibility. If you find your dog there, it will be heartbreaking but less stressful on you in the long run.

  • Regarding shelters, visit them in person at least twice weekly and look at all the animals. If you just call, shelter personnel may not know what kind of dog you describe or may not be familiar with the breed. Inspect every area of the shelter: exam room, quarantine room, observation area, and euthanizing area.

  • There are pet recovery services who will do the legwork for you. They may duplicate the steps you already have taken. If you decide to hire one, have them explain exactly what they will do and what their fee is. Then YOU need to follow up to see that they have followed through.

  • You can also try a pet psychic. This is an individual preference and may be too “far out” for some people. But it is an option, and that’s why I’m offering it here. Again, be VERY careful about whom you hire.

  • Keep to your own routine as much as possible. The more you can keep to normal patterns for yourself, the more you can stay focused and productive.

I hope you never need to use this information, but if you do, I hope it helps – and keep searching for your dog. Keep going — you CAN do this! Your dog is depending on you to find him. Remember, my client's dog was returned to her a year after he was stolen. I wish you the very best in this heartbreaking time.

Because this article is so long, it’s broken up into sections. Just a reminder, if you email me at I will send you the entire booklet in PDF.

Thanks for visiting Finding Stolen Dogs - Following Up. I make a small commission on any products or books I recommend.

Disclaimer: This article is for information only. It does not replace a consultation with a dog trainer, dog behavior consultant, or veterinarian and may not be used to diagnose or treat any conditions in your dog.

If you need help with puppy or dog training, we do both private in-person and virtual lessons via Zoom. Please contact us by calling or texting (310) 804-2392 or sending an email to . We look forward to working with you.


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