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How Do You Get a Stray Dog to Come to You?

by Adopt a Pet, | January 8, 2024

How Do You Get a Stray Dog to Come to You?

Gino Gallucci / iStock

You can get a stray dog to come to you by calling the dog to you, offering treats (be ready with a slip lead), and opening your car’s back door to allow her or him to jump in. There is no one trick that will work for every animal, but there are good ways to start.

Catching a Stray Dog

Before you consider catching a stray dog, make sure you are comfortable doing so. If the dog does not seem friendly or you are feeling uncomfortable, do NOT try to catch him. If you are comfortable attempting to catch the dog, follow these tips:

  • Call the dog and see if you can get him to follow you. Attempt to get the dog into a store or yard where you can close the door without having to grab the dog suddenly.

  • If the dog is running from you, chasing him isn’t the best idea. You’re not likely to outrun him, so chasing is a waste of time and may scare the dog. If you have a box or bag of treats, shaking it may be enough to get his attention. Then you can drop some treats on the ground and step back to give him room. Do it again, this time staying a little closer. Continue until you’re close enough to grab him.

  • If you are in a car, you can open the car’s back door and see if the dog will jump in. If the pup is an owned dog, there’s a good chance he will jump right in.

If you are unsuccessful in catching the dog or are not comfortable trying, you can also call animal control or a local rescue group near you that specializes in such dog rescues. It’s a good idea to find this information before you need it. Then, when you find a hard-to-catch stray, you’ll know who to call.

The Stray Dog Supply Kit

Thank you for your determination to help stray dogs. Many people keep a kit in their car that will be ready to go when they run into a wandering dog. Keep the following items in your kit:

  • A can of wet food

  • A bottle of water

  • A bag of treats

  • A slip lead

  • Collapsible bowls

  • Phone numbers of rescues and animal control

Whether the dog is lost, was stolen, or was abandoned by his owners, you may be the best chance of getting him the help he needs.

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