Lost/Found Pets

We know pets are family, and we do all we can to reunite lost dogs, cats and other animals with their people.
When someone finds a lost pet and reports it to CMPD Animal Care & Control, the pet is either:

  • Brought to the shelter and placed on a 72-hour (three-day) hold while we work to find its family using microchip data, rabies records and other identification; or
  • Kept by the person who found it while they try to reunite the pet with its people.


If your dog, cat or other family pet is missing, start by searching our database of lost pets:

Lost pets at the shelter

This section includes all pets on 72-hour lost hold and those available to adopt because they have not been claimed after three days. All of these pets are housed at the shelter. These records update hourly. If you don’t see your missing pet, keep checking daily as lost dogs, cats and other animals can arrive at the shelter at any time. We also strongly suggest you visit the shelter at least once every three days to search for your lost pet in person.

Reclaim a lost pet at the shelter

If you see your pet (or a pet that looks like it) in the Lost My Pet pages, come to the shelter immediately with the documentation you’ll need to reclaim your pet. We are located at 8315 Byrum Drive, Charlotte, NC, 28217, and we are open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

If you think you see your pet online but the shelter is closed, please call 311 to file a note that you’ll come when the shelter is open to identify your lost cat, dog or other animal in person.

NOTE: You know your pet better than anyone. Unless you are calling to file an after-hours note, please do not call 311, ask shelter staff or volunteers to look at a lost pet for you, or email a similar request. We cannot guarantee an email reply within the 72-hour hold window.

Found pets in the community

This section includes lost pets that have been found and are currently being cared for in the homes of members of the community. These reports also are updated throughout the day.

Please look closely at each info card on every page of the Lost and Found sections. Click the cards for more details on any pet, including the date it was found / arrived at the shelter.

Reclaim a found pet in the community

If you think you see your missing dog, cat or other pet in the Found Pet pages, click on the preview card to open the lost pet’s detailed info page.

Then, scroll down to the “Contact poster” section and fill out the form to connect with the community member currently caring for the lost pet.

found dogs in the community Found dogs staying in the community
found cats in the community Found cats staying in the community
found small and farm pets in the community Found small and farm pets in the community


If you don’t see your lost pet in our database, don’t lose hope. Here’s what to do now:

Step 1: File a Lost Pet Report

If you haven’t already, create a Lost Pet Report. You can add photos and details about your pet online or call 311 to file a report.

NOTE: Lost Pet reports expire after 30 days. If your pet is still missing after one month, please file a new report.file a lost pet report File a lost pet report

Step 2: Contact your pet’s microchip company

Contact your missing cat or dog’s microchip company to let them know your pet is missing, and to verify your address, phone number and other contact details are up-to-date.

If you’ve moved, changed your phone number or haven’t registered your pet’s microchip with the City of Charlotte, please update or submit your information for free now.

Step 3: Place familiar belongings outside to draw your pet home

Animals have a very strong sense of smell. Attract your missing four-legged family member by placing pieces of your clothing and / or their favorite blanket or bed outside in a sheltered area. You can also set a humane trap using tuna or other fragrant food. Cats are often drawn to the smell of their own litter boxes. Finally, check your crawl space, open areas under porches and decks, and other sheltered spots around your home or property. Ask your neighbors to do the same.

Check all of the above often.

Step 4: Check surrounding shelters and rescues

Lost pets can often find themselves some distance from their homes – whether because they traveled there by foot, were picked up by a good samaritan or by some other circumstance.

In addition to checking our database of lost pets daily, we also suggest regularly monitoring regional animal shelters and police departments. This list includes, but is not limited to:

You can also file a report, look for a lost pet and search found pets on these Facebook groups and sites:

Facebook Groups


Step 5: Keep checking daily

Remember, missing dogs, cats and other animals can be found and / or arrive at the shelter at any time. Keep checking our database of lost pets daily, and visit the shelter at least once every three days to search for your missing pet in person.

You can also contact Epic Animal Recovery to help you locate your missing pet. They are a group that provides a service of search and rescue for missing pets. Not just dogs, not just cats, but all animals.