Found a Lost Pet?

NOTICE: Due to a high volume of shelter pets currently in our care, we are asking community members to please contact the shelter before bringing birds and stray/community cats and kittens in. Thank you and please check back periodically for updates.


What if I found a lost pet?

If you find a lost pet, you can bring them to Riverdale Animal Shelter so that we may take steps to reunite them with their family who is likely searching for them. We will scan the pet for a microchip that contains their family’s contact information and review any tag information if applicable, and use that information to attempt to reach the pet’s owner. We will also take photos of the lost pet and post them on our website’s Lost and Found page, which updates every 30 minutes.  If there is a veterinary clinic or animal protection officer closer to where you found the pet, they may also be able to scan the chip to help find their family.  

We will take care of and shelter pets for a minimum of five business days to give their family enough time to search for them; this includes providing any urgent medical care. Stray pets waiting for their family to find them can be viewed on our Lost & Found page. We also register every lost pet that comes into our shelter on 24PetConnect in case their owner may be searching online. 

Additional ways you can help re-unite a pet with their family:

  • Email a photo of the found pet to us at [email protected]. If someone calls the shelter looking for their missing pet, we can try to make a match.
  • Post flyers near where you found the pet and alert neighbors.
  • Post the pet’s information and photo on 24PetConnect, Pawboost, Craigslist, NextDoor (in the neighborhood where your pet was lost), and lost pet pages on Facebook like Tri-County Lost & Found Pets.

If you have any additional questions about finding a lost pet, please call us at 720.523.PETS or email us at [email protected].

If I found a lost pet, can I adopt them if they go unclaimed?

Our first goal is always to reunite a lost pet with their family. We hold stray pets for a minimum, of five business days, although some pets may need to stay with us longer while we continue to trace potential owner information. However, should a pet go unclaimed, we will evaluate them for our adoption program.  Not all pets will go up for adoption as some need to stay longer to receive medical treatment and others may be transferred to a reputable rescue partner that may be more suited to their unique needs. For all of these reasons, we do not place stray pets on hold. However, good Samaritans who find a lost pet and bring them to Riverdale Animal Shelter, can review our Finders Request Information Sheet to potentially have the first option to visit with the pet, should they become available. (Please note a Finders Request does not guarantee adoption).

What if I found kittens living outside without their mother?

What If I Found Wildlife?