City Cast

What To Do With A Stray Animal

Brooke Lewis
Posted on August 28
A grey Tabby cat sits on the lap of her owner.

My cat, Shadow, was a stray pet and now she’s my best friend. (Brooke Lewis/City Cast Houston)

More than 10,000 stray animals have been picked up by the city’s animal control officers within the last year. So, what should you do if you come across a stray?

Keeping The Animal Safe

If you’re driving around or walking in your neighborhood, you might spot a stray animal. When this happens, it’s your job to keep you and the animal safe. The best option is to call your local animal control agency and report the animal. This gives the animal a better chance of being reunited with their owner. Animal control may also be able to come to the scene and assist you. If you decide to take the animal yourself, be careful. Safely restrain them and take them to a local shelter.

Taking The Animal Home

If you take a stray animal to your own home, be extremely careful.

  • Make sure you let your local animal control agency know, so the animal can be located if an owner comes looking.
  • Get the animal scanned for a microchip.
  • Post signs and photos of the animal in your neighborhood or at the local vet.
  • Get the animal a physical check-up at your local vet.
  • Make sure to separate the stray animal from your other pets at home until they get adjusted and the stray has a check-up at the vet.
  • If you can’t find the owner, then you may decide to keep the pet yourself, take it to your local shelter, or rehome with a friend or family member.

What To Have On Hand For Rescues

If you know you have a knack for finding lost animals and rescuing them, then here are items you’ll want on hand: animal first-aid kit, water bowls, water, dog or cat food, cat carrier, cardboard box, collars, leashes, phone number of local animal control or shelters.

Did you recently pick up a stray or have advice on this topic? I wanna know!

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