Many cats are free to roam and some cats by nature are inclined to wander further and for longer than others. Cats that appear lost and looking for food may have a home, especially if it appears a healthy weight and is well groomed. Feeding the cat can encourage it to stay or visit more often rather than go home.
The visiting cat may be on a specialist diet or medication and feeding it may be detrimental to its health. Provide water and a temporary shelter but do not take it in and feed it unless you are confident that it is a stray.
Ask your neighbours if they recognise the cat and check for posters and on social media. We keep a lost and found book at reception so you can report the animal to us with a brief description and the area that it has been found and we can see if their are any lost animals which match or keep the details on file in case a worried owner phones in looking for their pet.
If the cat is friendly to approach then check for a collar or ID tags. We suggest putting a paper collar on the cat that you think might be a stray and writing a message saying you are concerned about the cat and leaving a contact telephone number.
You can download a template from Cats Protection www.cats.org.uk. We can also check for a microchip and if present they will be able to contact the owners.
If you are concerned that the cat is injured or ill then contact the SSPCA in the first instance on 03000 999 999 and then contact the surgery on 01450 372038 and we will check it for a microchip and give initial emergency assessment and care. If no owner comes forward then the SSPCA will arrange further treatment for the cat.
Stray dogs can be reported to the council on 0300 100 1800 Monday to Friday who will arrange for the dog warden to collect them. Out with these hours you can take stray dogs to the local police station. If you find a stray dog and it is friendly to approach we can check for a microchip and hopefully reunite them with their owner.
If the dog is ill or injured again report to the SSPCA on 03000 999 999 in the first instance and then contact the surgery on 01450 372038.
Microchipping is a legal requirement for all dogs but this law doesn’t affect cats. However, we would recommend microchipping of all animals as it allows us to quickly and efficiently locate an owner should the animal become lost or be presented injured and is a permanent form of identification unlike a collar and tag.