FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How much do you charge for your services?

We are volunteers who offer our time at no charge as a public service. When we deploy to the field to set a trap, maintain a trail camera or feeding station or perform other boots-on-the-ground tasks, there are associated expenses, such as gas and supplies. So if we have assisted you with a search, we hope you will pay it forward with a voluntary donation to help cover the costs for the next person who has lost their dog. If equipment is needed to recover your dog, we ask that you provide a refundable deposit of $500 to cover any damage or loss.

We don’t have the manpower to distribute flyers and do all the work a lost dog search requires. Can you do that for us?

Unfortunately, no. We can consult remotely on every aspect of your case, but we generally do not put boots on the ground until a search has reached the capture phase. As difficult as it may be to summon the time and energy to look for your lost dog, you are the “fuel in the engine” that drives the search. Not only does your determination and commitment to the search keep it active, it can also motivate others—friends, neighbors, co-workers, even strangers on Facebook and other social media—to help you bring your dog home. We can give you tips for how to recruit help and get broad awareness if you lack people to distribute flyers.

I don’t live in the Twin Cities area. Can you still help me?

If we have a team member available, we can certainly help through phone consultation, offering strategies, ideas and tips to assist you with your search. For cases requiring humane trapping, it’s usually not feasible for us to get involved if the site is more than an hour’s drive from our nearest trapping-qualified team member. We have team members scattered across the state of Minnesota, so please contact us to find out whether we have someone close enough to help you on site.

There’s a stray dog that has been hanging around my property. It always runs away when I try to catch it. Can you help?

Absolutely. But first, we require that you make a reasonable effort to find the dog’s owner. We don’t want to capture and remove a dog that is simply free-roaming in his own neighborhood. By “reasonable effort,” we mean:

1. Post a sighting or “Is This Your Dog?” report on the Lost Dog – MN page on Facebook.

2. Post a photo on your community’s Craigslist page and ask if anyone knows who the dog belongs to.

3. Put up “Is This Your Dog?” flyers in the community where the dog is being seen.

4. Call your local authorities (shelter, animal control, police, sheriff, etc.) to report the stray and see if anyone has reported a lost dog. (Minnesota state law requires that strays must be reported to the appropriate local authorities and held for a minimum of five days before rehoming or claiming ownership.)

5. Search various online lost-and-found pet sites to see if anyone has posted a lost dog matching the description of the dog you are seeing.

While you are searching for the owner, set out a feeding station and verify that the dog has returned to it at least three times.

If an owner cannot be located and you want the Retrievers to trap the dog, we must have commitment from you (or the rescue or private home you have arranged) that the dog will have a place to go once it leaves the trap. A successful capture can happen anytime of the day or night, and you must take possession of the dog immediately. Please do not ask us to capture a dog that has no place to go other than animal control or a kill shelter.

Do you have tracking dogs?

No, that’s a specialty of its own. We look forward to partnering with a pet-tracking dog team when one is created in Minnesota.