Stray Dog
Brad McMillan stars in Lucky Dog
Presented By
Lucky Dog

Six Things To Do If You Rescue a Stray Dog

Have you ever caught and put a stray dog under your protection? Here are some things to keep in mind the next time you save a stray dog!

Many stray dogs end up in animal shelters. If they do not have owners who come to claim them, the next hope is that they are adopted into loving homes. For many strays, however, if they exhibit behavioral problems or seem too timid or shy, they’re at a disadvantage. Sweet little Vinnie is one of those dogs. That’s why North Central Animal Shelter called in dog training expert, Brandon McMillan.

Check out the clip below to see how Brandon takes Vinnie home to the Lucky Dog Ranch, and works with him to combat Vinnie’s extreme anxiety:

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Brandon explains that most stray dogs are used to being shooed away. Vinnie needs to learn to trust people. Brandon uses his “TLC Training” in which he aims to gain trust, love, and then can conquer their training. Once this is accomplished, it will be much easier for Vinnie to learn the 7 Common Commands: sit, stay, down, come, off, heel, no -- basically, the A, B, C’s for dogs!

When Vinnie was brought to the shelter, he wasn’t microchipped and had no tags, so there was no way to know if he had previous owners. If you encounter a stray dog, the American Humane Society offers the following recommendations on what to do:

Capture and Contain:

You’ll want to be careful when trying to capture a dog. You can use treats to lure a shy dog, and if you have a leash, do your best to secure the dog with it.

Call the Authorities:

If you’re unable to capture the dog, either call the police or your local animal control and let them know where you most recently saw the dog.

Check for ID Tags:

Unlike Vinnie, if you find a dog who has ID tags, immediately contact their owner. If you don't reach them initially, you should still file a “found” report with your local animal shelter, in case their owners look for their dog there.

No Tags? Check for a Microchip:

Instead of holding onto a tagless dog, bring them to the animal shelter so that they can scan for a microchip. If they have one, the shelter can easily look up the owner's information.

Leave the Dog at a Shelter:

If the dog does have an owner, the shelter is a likely place they will come looking for them. If you fall in love, and hope to make this dog your own, find out from the shelter what your state’s holding period laws are. This is the minimum required time a dog must be kept at a shelter before they could be adopted.

Post Fliers:

The Humane Society recommends even if the dog is placed in a shetler, to still post flyers around the area where the dog was found, as well at local veterinary clinics. They also suggest a found report on the pet section of Craigslist.

Additionally, we think you can use your social media to get the word out. Post on Facebook, Instagram, and Nextdoor.

Here are some great tools to have on hand should you come across a stray! 

Max and LeoMax and Leo

Rope Slip Lead

As we all know, stray dogs come in all shapes and sizes, and a lot of times, these poor dogs in distress come without collars! A rope slip leash/lead is a perfect tool to have on hand should you come across a stray dog, and it’ll slip onto their neck without much fuss. 

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$14.99 on Amazon
Aspen PetAspen Pet

Traditional Kennel

A crate is a great thing to have on hand for your own pet or a lucky stray dog! Dogs in distress tend to run away as soon as you let your guard down, which could end up putting the poor puppy in danger of being hit by a car, being attacked by other animals, or without proper care and nourishment from being lost on the streets. 

Buy Now!

$59.99 on Amazon
Old Mother Hubbard'sOld Mother Hubbard's

Minty Fresh Breath Baked Dog Treats

One of the best ways to coax a dog into your safe supervision is with delicious treats! We love a good, minty dog treat as it’ll do the double duty of nourishing your lucky stray, and also freshen their breath! 

Buy Now!

$7.99 on Chewy
Burt's BeesBurt's Bees

2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner

Make your lucky stray dog presentable, cute and cuddly by giving it a nice, warm scrub down. We love this formulation from Burt’s Bees as it has buttermilk in it, which will soothe and calm your puppy. This lucky dog will be adopted in no time! 

Buy Now!

$6.99 at Chewy

Dog Chew

One of the most trusted names in dog chew toys, this Kong will provide anxiety relief for your stray dog. Occupy your lucky dog with this toy until they are claimed or adopted! 

Buy Now!

$10.99 on Amazon

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Learn more about pet training on Dabl! Click here to find out where to watch, and check our schedule here!