In our Leigh's Lost and and Found today, the basic do's and don'ts, if you find a lost or stray animal on the streets.
We get a lot of questions on the lost and found page from people who come across a loose animal. Should they pick it up or not? Where should they take it? So we went to the Humane Soceity of southwest missouri to get the expert answers.
The Humane Society is full of dogs and cats, just found loose on the streets of springfield.
"We do want you to be cautious of approaching the animal first of all."
Director of Development Karen Foutch says if you come across one, make sure it's safe to engage them.
"If you do come across an animal that doesn't want to come to you, we do ask that you contact animal control, and they can come out. Because first and foremost, we're about the safety of the animals and that's getting them off the streets.
If the animal is approachable?
"Take them in, for one, to get them off the streets for their safety. Then you can do many things, you can take pictures, post them online. You can bring them to us here at the shelter. "
We have a full list of all the shelters in our coverage area in the Ozarks under the notes section of the lost and found page.
Any of these shelters and pet stores have a scanner and can check a found animal for a microchip, for free.
"If they're microchipped we instantly are able to contact you and within hours get you back with your family member."
It's ideal If you can keep the found animal at your home while you look for an owner so shelter space is freed up for homeless pets looking for a new family.
But if you know you can't make that commitment, call your local animal control with exact location information. Also, take some pictures to post on Lost and Found and other social media sites.
Shares and word of mouth often get them home quickly.