News Release - Keeping Lost Dogs in Neighborhoods Best Way to Get Them Home

City of Rochester

News Release

(Thursday, July 1, 2021) — Rochester Animal Services is advising city residents who find lost dogs over the Independence Day weekend to keep them in the neighborhood where they’re found rather than bring them to the animal shelter.

“If you find a dog and can hold it for at least 48 hours you’ll give them a much better chance to reunite with their families than by bringing them to the shelter,” said Animal Services Director Chris Fitzgerald. “More dogs get lost around July fourth than any other time of year. With the City shelter already at capacity, and other area shelters full or nearly full as well, we need to work together as a community to get these lost pets home to their loved ones.”

A new study published in Frontiers in Veterinary Science finds that 70 percent of lost dogs are found less than a mile from their homes; and 42 percent are less than 400 feet.

If you find a lost dog:

  • Visit the City’s Found A Pet page at and review the Found Pet Resource Packet.
  • File a found report with Rochester Animal Services on that web page, and go to any vet, NSC Office, City R-Center and several Pet Supplies Plus locations to get the dog scanned for a microchip. Contact the owner if the dog has a registered chip, or is wearing identification on their collar.
  • Post the dog’s picture and where they were found to Facebook lost and found pets groups in your area, Nextdoor, Craigslist and other social media platforms.
  • Post found dog signs in the immediate area where the dog was found.
  • Those who cannot hold the dog safely in their home can ask neighbors to temporarily house the dog to give the owners a chance to come find them.



Pets and Animals