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Get Help for a Lost or At-Risk Animal

Home Programs & Services Get Help for a Lost or At-Risk Animal

If your pet goes missing…

(If you are on this page because you want help with a STRAY animal, please skip to the section below)

It’s devastating when a beloved family pet goes missing; most people don’t know what to do, or where to start. A landscaper fails to latch a gate securely; a child leaves a door open; or house guests not accustomed to being vigilant allow a skittish pet to slip out the front door during a party. HARTT provides valuable tips on exactly how to go about using time and resources most wisely and efficiently to locate your lost pet. Once located, if your pet is skittish or shy and won’t come to you, HARTT can assist with humanely trapping the animal.

The first 24-48 hours are the most critical, and the effort you put in during this critical time will dramatically increase the likelihood that you will recover your pet safely.  However, it is NEVER too late to begin searching for your lost pet!  Most lost pets do survive; they are incredibly resourceful and can usually find sources of water, nourishment and shelter. 

If your pet is missing, what we need most from you and your family is your commitment that you will share information freely and actively participate in the search and support effort. Your active involvement allows HARTT volunteers to concentrate on the areas where our specialized skills and knowledge can be deployed most efficiently to help as many lost pets in our community as possible.

Even if your pet was lost from an unfamiliar area, approximately 80% of the lost pets we help stay within 1 mile of where they went missing (even if this location is hundreds of miles from their home).  Using that probability, we will concentrate on this area first.

The strategy also may be a bit different if your pet is young/healthy, or old/sick/medically compromised, and if your dog is confident/social or shy/skittish.  Our Lost Pet Owner Guide will guide you through the critical steps to take to bring your lost pet home as quickly as possible.  We suggest you print out a copy and keep it with you as you go about your lost pet search steps.

OWNERS OF LOST PETS – Need our help?

(If you’re looking for help regarding a stray, please refer to the section at the bottom right section of this page)

If you would like a consultation with HARTT, OR if your pet has been located in a somewhat defined area and you would like our help with humane trapping, please fill out and submit the following form.  Our services are available only in Maricopa County, Arizona and in Payson, Arizona at this time, based on volunteer availability. Due to the overwhelming demand for our services and the volume of animals in need, we do our best to prioritize the cases we accept in the following order:

  1. Lost pets, with an owner who is able to actively help us with the search activities (highest priority);
  2. Injured animals;
  3. Animals who are healthy but who are in imminent danger (trapped in a building; running along a highway; etc.);
  4. Animals are in close proximity to a trained HARTT volunteer who is available to assist; or
  5. Stray dogs who appear to be substantially healthy and uninjured (lowest priority, due to limited volunteer availability).

HARTT is a nonprofit organization supported by donations – your support of our work allows us to help you, as well as other families in this difficult situation.  Please let us know if you are willing to make a tax deductible donation to HARTT!  Please allow up to 48 hours for one of our volunteers to reach out to you.

HARTT’s Role (What to expect from us)

If you fill out our form and ask for help, please remember that HARTT is run completely by volunteers who help with animals in need after we get off work, tend to our families, etc.  Consider HARTT’s involvement as a supplement to, rather than a replacement for, your own personal effort and involvement!  Our help may consist of some or all of the following:

  1. Reviewing your submitted Help Request to learn more about the situation;
  2. Reviewing online maps to become familiar with the area and advise on potential strategies;
  3. Designing eye-catching and effective flyers, and sending them to the printer, where you can pick them up;
  4. Helping you to know what steps to take in response to changing circumstances;
  5. Setting humane traps and monitoring equipment, once the animal is located in a defined area and is showing up somewhat predictably;
  6. Due to limited volunteer availability, our volunteers do not normally hang flyers or assist with searching – however, we will be ready to trap once sightings are received.

YOUR Role (What we will expect from you)

We will expect you to be an active, engaged participant in the search for your pet.  Once we agree to accept your case, please expect to:

  1. Pay for printing of flyers (approximate cost is $10 to $30) – we get a nonprofit discount at our printer and you will only pay the actual cost of the flyers;
  2. Hang at least 100 flyers in the area designated by your HARTT case leader within 48 hours – you may want to enlist family and friends now to help you;
  3. Be highly responsive to calls and texts from HARTT volunteers, and from members of the public who may have spotted your pet, taking detailed notes of all information provided by the caller;
  4. Participate in boots-on-the-ground searches and other related tasks, where requested and appropriate;
  5. Share any and all information with your HARTT case leader that may be helpful to us in learning more about your pet.

PET OWNERS – Step #1

Before you click on the red “Request Help” button below, please click on this blue attachment and print a copy – these are things you should start doing RIGHT NOW, even before we make contact.

PET OWNERS – Step #2

After you’ve saved a copy of the Lost Pet Owner Guide, please click the red link below to fill out a request for HARTT to provide assistance.  If all fields are filled out correctly, you will receive a confirming message once you’ve submitted the form.

STRAY Animals – Step #1

Know of an animal in need who is a stray or does not have a known owner?  Keep reading to learn more about our services and how to get help. Our services are available only in Maricopa County, Arizona and in Payson, Arizona at this time, based on volunteer availability.  BEFORE submitting a request for help, please click on the blue link below, download a copy of this document and read it right away – it’s important you understand our services related to strays (those animals who do NOT have a known owner) before submitting a Request for Help.

STRAY Animals – Step #2

Now that you have saved and read the “Strays – How we operate and how you can help” document, if you feel that HARTT can assist with this animal in need, please click the red link blow to fill out a request for HARTT to provide assistance.  If all fields are filled out correctly, you will receive a confirming message once you’ve submitted the form.