What should you do when you have found a pet?
If it is safe to approach the animal and you are able to take the animal to a safe place, do so. Take the animal to a local veterinarian to verify if there is a microchip or tattoo. Most veterinarians will do this service for free for found pets. Remember that found pets are not like found pennies -- you do not get to keep them. Proper due diligence is required to find their home and return them. You should take a picture of the animal, put up posters, and contact local shelters and veterinarians. Be aware that in most locales, it is the law to report a found pet. Thank you for being a good Samaritan!
What should you do when you have lost your pet?
Don't stop now. Your lost pet is depending on you to continue your search. Make up posters and get them posted around the area on telephone posts, in shop windows, at local schools (kids have a keen eye for animals), at veterinary offices, at animal shelters, at pet stores, at grocery stores, and even walk door-to-door. Retweet the Twitter post to your followers. Share the Facebook post with your friends. Post the URL of the notice page or RSS feed to your blog.
And, always, always, always keep looking and calling for your pet. They may be trapped in a garage or outbuilding or under a pile of debris. They may be hurt and can't call out to you. They may have been picked up by another person who may or may not be helping to get him back home to you. Be diligent and steadfast in your efforts. Most pets are found within the first 3 days but some have been found months and even years later. Good luck!