The City of Waco launched a website in November to help people find their lost pets. Six months later, Animal Care Unit officials say people are using the service, but they are still working to get the word out about the website.
"It has helped out a lot. It's just an extra tool to help get the owner their animal back," Luis Leyva, the Waco Animal Services Shelter Manager, said.
The city said they want people to remember if they have a pet missing, they also need to physically walk through the shelter to check for their lost pet.
"It's best to come in here in person to actually see the animal so that it can interact with you and you can say, 'yes okay this is mine,'" Leyva said.
Animal Services receives at least 30 to 40 calls a day. Thanks to the new website, if animal control officers pick up your pet, you can see their picture on the website within an hour.
"Luckily, with this website and the microchip and everything we're able to get [the animals] home faster," Leyva said.
The city said when severe weather and thunderstorms roll in, the shelter sees an increase in the amount of calls they get to pick up animals.
"The lightning, the thunder you know it scares the animals the same way fireworks does," Leyva said.
Leyva understands the feelings behind losing an animal. His dog disappeared about a month ago.
"You get that feeling of where is she at? Is she safe? Is she okay, you know? What happened to her?" Leyva said.
Thankfully he found her thanks to social media, but he says the website is a tool to help alleviate some of that stress.
If your pet goes missing, you can visit lostpetswaco.com. Animal Control Officers update the website hourly with descriptions of the animals they pick up and where they were picked up.
The shelter keeps the animal for 72 hours before the animal appears on the Humane Society of Central Texas website as an adoptable animal.
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