Ever experience that awful feeling when you realize you haven’t seen your cat or dog for a while? You start looking for them, but get no response and then you get that sinking feeling like someone kicked you in the stomach… This actually happens to a lot of pet owners and to help, we found some great tips to avoid the unnecessary stress.
Realising that your pet is missing is one of the worst feelings you can experience, and it happens a lot since over 40% of all households have at least one furry family member.
Luckily, there are steps you can take right away to make sure your lost pet is found as soon as possible and without any lasting effects. But first, let’s stop and think why your pet is hiding in the first place. If you figure out the reason, you can completely avoid this situation in the future.
5 REASONS WHY PETS HIDE
There are a number of reasons your pet hides, sometimes it's just part of their normal behaviour, but it can also be a warning sign. If hiding means a change in your pet’s behaviour it could be a clue that something is bothering them. In such cases, it's wise to pay attention. One of the following examples could be the reason why your pet is hiding.
1. BOREDOM OR LONELINESS While you’re at work, your pet will get lonely or bored. To prevent them from hiding or getting lost, keep things interesting by adding regular distractions, such as new toys or delicious treats around your home.
2. THEY GET FRIGHTENED Unexpected events and loud noises can have your pet looking for safe spaces where they feel protected. Make sure to minimize the stress in their environment as much as possible and stay nearby when you know something they’re not familiar with is about to happen.
3. PLAYING Cats love to hide in boxes and paper bags you leave lying around. And dogs just love to explore the house or take naps in the bushes. It’s normal and fun behaviour for them, but a little less fun for you, when you're stuck searching for them.
4. LOOKING FOR FAMILIAR SURROUNDINGS If your pet is a new addition to your family, they can wander off looking for familiar surroundings from their old home or shelter. Keep an eye on them until they get comfortable to prevent them from getting lost.
5. MATING SEASON If your pet isn't neutered, they'll get restless during mating season and will look for calming places that help them relax. You probably won’t be able to find them in their usual spots, so keep a close eye on them to make sure they’re just hiding and aren’t missing or lost.
HOW TO FIND YOUR MISSING PET
1. KEEP CALM. Losing track of your cat can be nerve-racking. But in most cases, you will find your pet hiding inside the house or in the neighbourhood.
2. SEARCH INSIDE YOUR HOME FIRST. As soon as you notice your pet is missing, start searching inside your house and check their usual hiding spots, especially under and behind the furniture and other tight or small spaces.
3. USE FOOD AND TOYS. Most pets will react to the sound of food in their bowl or boxes of treats rattling. You can also make noise using their favourite toy to attract their attention.
4. GIVE YOUR PET SOME TIME. If you've been searching for a while with no luck, take a short break. It's possible your pet found a hiding spot that you missed and could just be taking a nap there.
5. GET A TRACKER. If you often search for your pet, think about investing in a tracker for their collar. Pet trackers that use GPS technology are usually expensive, have a monthly subscription fee and have to be recharged often, but they could be a life-saver if your pet actually got lost.
If your pet just likes to hide inside or around the house, a Bluetooth tracker like Chipolo would be a good solution.
CHIPOLO BLUETOOTH TRACKER TO THE RESCUE
Removing all possible causes why your pet is hiding is the best solution to frustrating hide and seek situations. But when their hiding isn’t a sign of something bothering them, add a Bluetooth tracker to the collar to eliminate your daily search process.
A Bluetooth tracker like Chipolo is a small smart gadget you can attach to your pet’s collar and connect to your smartphone using Bluetooth. It has a range of about 60m (200 feet), depending on your surroundings. This device can help you locate your pet when they're hiding inside or around the house.
Simply use the app to ring the tracker and follow the sound. If your pet gets too far and the Bluetooth connection is lost, the app will show you the time and place on a map when it went out of range, so you'll always know how long your pet's been out of range of 60m. When out of range, you won’t be able to get real-time location updates, but if you mark the Chipolo attached to their collar as lost in the app, another user passing your pet will be able to pick up on their current location.
This feature is called community search, it's completely anonymous and its efficiency depends on the density of Chipolo users in your area. So for outdoor pets, it might be better to invest in a GPS tracker instead.