Its an unfortunate reality in our region of Southern Mississippi that there is an abundance of stray animals. Southern Pines is committed every day to try and help this burden by educating our community, spaying and neutering, as well as finding homes for as many animals as we possibly can. We know that it is common for people to encounter and take in strays in need of nourishment, companionship or shelter. Below we have compiled a short guide to how you can best try and reunite animals with their owners or rehome them if needed.
Steps to Reunite a Pet with Their Owner:
1. Use Social Media
- Sharing and promoting the animal on your social media is also a great way to get the dog's photo and information out to the community.
- Also, utilizing community pages or groups on Facebook to help spread the word that you have found a missing pet is a great resource.When people call Southern Pines with information about a lost or missing pet we direct them to a Facebook page that services the Pinebelt region and includes admins from other local shelters called Lost and Found Pets of the Pinebelt.
The Lost and Found Pets of the Pinebelt Facebook Page is monitored by several area shelters, including Southern Pines, Southern Cross Animal Rescue, and Hub City Humane Society. Area residents are invited to post both lost and found pets on the page, with the purpose of creating a central location for networking lost pets and getting them home.
Whether you've lost a pet or found a stray, posters are encouraged to:
1. Upload a picture
2. Include geographic location where the pet was lost or found
3. Include pertinent information about the pet (age, breed/mix, collar, microchip, gender, altered status, unique markings etc.)
4. Share contact information
2. Get the Pet Scanned for a Microchip
- Most vet offices or clinics will scan an animal for a microchip for free. Taking the dog or cat to a facility with a scanner and asking for them to check is a quick process that could possibly deliver the owner’s information nearly immediately. Most microchips are located under the skin so there is always a chance that a pet could be chipped even if they have no other form of identification.
- Making posters and hanging them on posts or boards around your neighborhood is a good way to get the word out that you have found a stray. Keep in mind that there are people that don’t have access to social media so having a poster or flyer up increases the number of people you are reaching.
It’s Not Working- Rehoming Options
1. Make sure they’re ready for Rehoming!
- We strongly recommend that you set your animal up for success before you start the rehoming process! Please make sure your cat or dog is spayed or neutered, vaccinated and has had a recent vet exam. For low cost spay neuter options and low-cost wellness plans you can contact the Southern Pines Spay and Neuter Clinic.
- The following web sites will allow you to post your animals on their sites. Please visit each page/site to read their rules and regulations.
- Other options include classified websites as well as contacting breed specific rescues if that applies to your animal. Often the best way to find rescues is be searching online and specifying the city or region you live in (ex. South Mississippi, Pinebelt, Hattiesburg, etc.)
- We recommend that if you are considering working with a rescue organization, make sure that they are a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. You can confirm any organization’s non-profit status at www.irs.gov/charities. Don’t be afraid to ask questions!
- Lamar County or City of Petal - Hub City Humane Society
- Your tax dollars help to pay for that contract. HCHS requires proof of residency and may require a surrender appointment. They also provide lower fees to their service area than we are able to provide to out of service areas.
- Jones County - Southern Cross Animal Rescue and the Animal Rescue League
- Pearl River County - Pearl River SPCA.
- Stone County - Stone County SPCA.
- Rankin/Hinds/Madison Counties - CARA and the Mississippi Animal Rescue League.
- George County - Dixie Adoptables, formerly the Lucedale City Municipal Shelter
- Simpson County - Save Our Strays in Mendenhall.
- Harrison County (Gulf Coast area) - Humane Society of South Mississippi (HSSM)
- Jasper County - Happy Healthy Pet Adoption in Bay Springs.
- Lincoln County - Brookhaven Animal Rescue League.
- Adams County - Natchez Adams County Humane Societ
- Wayne County - Waynesboro Animal Rescue (WAR)
- If you’ve attempted to reunite the stray animal with its owner and you’ve been unsuccessful we are happy to help. Southern Pines Animal Shelter requires appointments for most of the animals that we take in. There is also a fee associated with leaving an animal in our care. The county or area that you live in determines that small fee. Southern Pines does have a Surrender Counselor on staff to discuss your options.
- Please feel free to call us, we will be happy to assist you! You can contact our Surrender Counselor at 601-544-6632 (ext. 408) and leave a message if you’re unable to get someone on the phone immediately. You can also reach out by email by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Visit our Surrendering a Pet page for more information.