This leaves a dog feeling scared and confused. Kindness and love are what these dogs need. Sometimes, survival defense mechanisms come into play.
This can make the dog appear to be vicious when in fact, it’s just scared. It may take some time to establish trust with the dog to get it to come up to you, but in the end, it is going to be worth it.
Be calm and patient when approaching
Sit several feet away from a stray dog and just calmly talk to it. This may seem odd but a calming voice is reassuring to a stray dog. Slowly hold out your hand and make slow motions with your hands letting the dog know that you would like him or her to approach. This may take several days to accomplish.
Offer water and food
Stray dogs are often very hungry. If you don’t have dog food available, lean meats are often appealing if he or she is hungry. Place a bowl of water and food several feet away from you, but between you and the dog. Sit quietly and just be patient. The dog will likely approach the food and eat. You should still not try to approach them yourself. Let the dog come to you after it has eaten. It may just run away but will be grateful for the food.
Contact a no-kill rescue group
If the stray dog happens to be friendly and come right to you, it is okay to take it inside if you do not have other dogs or small children as you do not know what the reaction in the household is. Even if you can’t bring the dog inside your home, consider opening up the garage and allowing the dog to come and go. At least it will have shelter. You should, at this time, contact a local, no-kill shelter and report finding the dog. In most cases, the rescue group will come to your home to take the dog to their facility where it will be listed as found and scanned for a microchip. If the dog has identification but the owners are still unable to be located, the adoption process can begin. This means obtaining veterinary care for updated shots, spaying/neutering and a general checkup will be done.
Call the RSPCA to report suspected animal abuse
Dogs runaway sometimes after being abused or neglected by their owners. While this is very sad, it happens all over the world every day. The best authority to call for animal abuse is the RSPCA, dog and small animal advocates. These facilities are supported by donations, grants and by other private funding. Even if you cannot donate monetarily to help this organization, there are several other things that you can do for fundraising for the RSPCA. Consider posting on social media networks about a collection of old blankets, wet and dry food, bones, toys and other items that the local facility can use.
Through organized or unconventional events scheduled by yourself or your group of supporters, you can help raise money and partake in the RSPCA Choice Initiative. The funds raised from the event hosting of your choosing, whether it is an elegant dinner, reverse raffle or other fun event, will be donated to the organization of your choice. This is a way to get involved when you are unable to attend a local event. Attending local events is another way to get involved in Choice Initiative and help raise funding for the RSPCA.
Contact a local vet to scan for a microchip
Most veterinary offices have the necessary technology to scan for microchips. If no collar was on the dog to provide owner information with dog tags, this is the next best thing to do if you are able to make contact with it. The vet can scan for a microchip. If there is one, the person whose information is on the chip will be contacted. In some cases, the dog was re-homed and this is not the current owner. A miracle can occur where the previous owner listed on the microchip will come and take this dog back to their home.
Try to find the owners yourself
Take photos of the dog if you are able to get close enough, for those that are not forwardly friendly. Post photos on social media outlets, local online classifieds and make copies of the photos to post in the local neighborhood as well. List the area, date and condition of the dog where you last saw it or where your location is (be general such as a block number or intersection). Provide an email address for a potential owner to contact you. Ask anyone claiming that the dog is theirs to provide a photo of the dog at their home to prove that it is theirs and ask what the dog’s name is. If the dog responds to the name called, it is likely their dog. Make the reunification as soon as possible. The family and dog are likely to be happy to see each other again.
If you have made every effort to find the owner of a stray dog, consider keeping the pooch for yourself and your family. This would absolutely be considered as saving an animal’s life. Granted you have no idea what the dog has been through in their life, but they will show their appreciation for your love and affection with smiles, happy eyes, wagging tails and alert ears. Even if you have never owned a dog before, the companionship and happiness that a dog can bring to a home is simply a blessing in disguise. Do everything that you can to help a stray dog, sometimes they just need someone to show that they care to allow themselves to be helped and taken off of the streets.