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The County of DuPage
Wheaton, Illinois

Found Animals Information

Click here to Report a Found Animal.  

Lost Animal Myths

Many people erroneously assume that lost animals have been abandoned by their owners.

  • This is not so. Most owners of lost animals are searching for their beloved pets via newspaper ads, reports to police and animal control departments, posting fliers in their neighborhood, etc.

Many people also assume that animals that are not wearing id tags do not have identification.

  • This is not necessarily true. Many animals are tattooed or microchipped, both permanent forms of identification.

Many people also assume that only irresponsible, uncaring owners lose their pets.

  • This is also not true. Accidents happen! Most pets become lost at least once in their lifetime.

What to do when you find a Stray Animal

  • Complete the Found Animal Report.
  • If the animal is wearing i.d. tags, contact the owner immediately.
  • If the animal is wearing a rabies tag, call the appropriate county's Rabies Control department and give them the tag number. They will provide you with the owner information.
  • Many animals that are not wearing tags are implanted with microchips, a permanent form of identification. All local stray holding facilities and police departments have scanners to read the chips. The owner information can be traced from the microchip number.
  • Most lost animals are found within a ten-block radius of where they were lost. Post FOUND PET fliers in this area. Look for LOST PET fliers in the area.
  • Post a FOUND PET photo, description, and location where you found the animal on a lost/found sites such as Lost Dogs of Illinois, Lost Cats of Illinois, Fido Finder, etc.
  • Contact your local police department and animal control to notify them of the found pet.  Be sure to provide as much detail as possible about the animal's description, special markings, any collar/tags/accessories, and location where the animal was found.  Follow up by dropping off or emailing a FOUND PET flyer to each one.
  • Run a FOUND PET ad in the local paper and post FOUND PET flyers around your neighborhood. Many local papers run found pet ads for free. Look for LOST PET ads in the local paper.
  • If you cannot get a hold of the owner right away, take the animal to the stray holding facility closest to the area where the animal was found as soon as possible. This will give the owner the best chance possible of finding their lost pet!