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Humane Society of Greater Rochester

In a matter of seconds, your pet can become lost. They may dash through an open door, chase after another animal, or run from a loud noise. This time of year can be especially scary for our furry friends. During the weeks leading up to and after the 4th of July, one in five dogs becomes lost. Help keep your pet at home, and keep yourself prepared should they ever decide to sneak away!

Check your pet’s gear

Is their collar or harness too loose? You should be able to fit two fingers underneath a collar, as well as a harness. If either hangs down too loosely chances are they can wriggle out of it. Leashes should be strong and held properly so that a quick pull won’t leave you chasing after your pet. Be careful of retractable leashes, as they can snap or break if your dog decides to dart toward that darn squirrel in your neighborhood!

Keep an eye out for possible escape routes

Yards are a great place for pets to play and relax. Keep your pets safe by checking around for any holes in the fencing (or places that might have been dug under). Also, make sure your fence is at the correct height so a pet cannot jump over if scared.


Check the Chip

A microchip is one of the best ways of helping find a pet should they get lost. Animal hospitals, animal control officers, and shelters have microchip scanners on hand and will look up a pet’s information right away. The most common mistake owners make, however, is not updating their information. Update all your information as soon as possible whether it is a phone number or address.

Keep up-to-date records

Make sure you have up-to-date records for your pet including great photos. Does your pet have a spot on its back? Speckles on their feet? Or something else that makes them special? Having photos that illustrate markings that could help someone tell them apart from other pets will help you spot your pet and return them to you should they go missing.

The Fourth of July

The Fourth is the most common day of the year for pets to become lost. For many pets, the noise of fireworks is just too much! It triggers a fight or flight response and many will turn tail and run! If you will not be home, consider keeping windows and curtains closed from the sights and sounds, as well as putting on background noise like television to muffle any noise. If your pet is especially anxious, consider talking with your veterinarian about medications or pheromones to help calm your pet for the night. Try and keep pets indoors as much as possible and supervise any potty breaks when fireworks are likely to be happening. If your pet is especially anxious, they may need you with them for the night to feel safe and secure. Providing them a safe place to hide and wait out the fireworks with their best friend (you) by their side will help relieve their stress.


Help them Home

Even after taking every precaution a pet could still run away and become lost. Here are some helpful hints to help them home.

  • Report it! Make sure you report any lost or found pets to your local animal shelters, and then some. Pets can wander off quite the distance or a Good Samaritan may bring your pet to a shelter local to them, but not to you. So report it everywhere you can. You can report a lost or found pet on the Lost and Found page on our website. Lollypop Farm updates our Lollypop Spotters page with all stray pets brought to the shelter so our community can help spread the word. You should also report to your microchip company to make sure all information is up to date.
  • Texting! Lollypop Farm provides a texting service to give you step-by-step instructions should you lose or find a pet. Just text LOST or FOUND to 1-888-LFL-LOST.
  • Share! Spread the word through social media! Share on community and neighborhood groups and on Facebook pages like Lollypop Spotters. We have a whole list of places on our website where you can put out alerts to help a pet home. And don’t forget good old-fashioned flyers around the neighborhood can go a long way!
  • Don’t Give Up! After searching for a pet for days, weeks, or even a month, you could get discouraged. Please don’t give up though. We’ve seen so many pets reunited after long periods away from their homes.


Lollypop Farm has an amazing Lost and Found team ready to give you guidance should your pet go missing. Visit our website for more helpful tips and give us a call if you find yourself needing more advice. We’re always happy to help them home!

Lollypop Farm is proud to work with the team at Howard Hanna for Help them Home, an initiative to help return pets to their loving home this fireworks season.