Sage in 2003
came to us at age 13 with just a single word
After my husband and I were finally (!) successful in trapping Sage, former police officer turned pet detective Kat Albrecht began sending other owners of lost indoor-only cats to me for trapping assistance. (It was Kat's knowledge of lost animal behavior that ultimately steered us towards a successful recovery of Sage.) Since then, I have researched cat behavior extensively, have surveyed animal shelters in CA to determine the type of info available to owners of lost pets, and compared search methods with fellow pet detectives and animal behaviorists. It was through helping many people in a variety of lost cat scenarios, taking copious notes, looking for common patterns, seeing how Kat analyzed missing pet cases, and then comparing these back to formal observations by trained animal behaviorists, that I developed a few more guidelines that have helped others recover their own animals.
Because people would often ask me the same questions, it made sense to have a central area where people had quick access to answers. So I went through notes of all the cases and compiled the pertinent info into the pages you see here.
Anyone who is a keen observer of animals is perfectly capable of being a lost pet detective. It's just that when it's your own pet that is missing, you aren't going to have the time to learn the principles by direct observation. That is what these pages are for, a distillation of common sense observations in the area of lost indoor-only cat behavior, gathered from my own direct observations, as well as many others, in an easy to understand format.
While it may be common sense, lost timid or indoor-only cat behavior is not common knowledge.. .far from it. Unfortunately, the most likely venues for info when a pet is lost or missing (animal shelter, humane society, etc.) do not routinely provide this information to owners, nor were most of the shelters I surveyed aware of this "complete cover" behavior. So if you know anyone who may need this type of info, please pass the word on.
One time someone asked me, So, um. . .you just do this?? Yup. I just do this :o) I do this in hopes that I can help others avoid the same pain we went through when our kitty went on her misadventure. We know sooooo much more than we did in 2000 when Sage began her journey. I am so confident that with the proper information there is a very good chance many indoor-only cats can be found. With that hope and using the proper techniques, I hope owners continue their search until they have a successful recovery. And if I was able to help in some way? The gift to me is immeasurable.
addition to updating and maintaining these pages, I love to garden,
go for cool morning runs, and sing to my cats daily. . .which is perhaps
why Sage ran away in the first place :o)
Half Moon Bay Flower Mart
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