I FOUND A STRAY DOG
First, take the dog to any vet to be scanned for a microchip. This is free and the easiest way to reunite the pet with his owner. If the dog has no microchip, notify local shelters that you found a dog, and give them a good photo with a description and exact location where he was found.
Post the dog on all social media sites. Next Door, local Facebook groups, local lost and found pet Facebook groups, local veterinarian offices, and message boards are good places to start. Don’t forget http://lostdogsgeorgia.org and https://www.facebook.com/LostPetsGeorgia/.
Get the dog spayed/neutered if not yet sterilized. Tens of thousands of dogs are euthanized in Georgia shelters each year due to our pet overpopulation crisis. A list of low-cost and non-profit clinics can be found here https://www.fridasfoundation.com/pet-help-resources. If the dog is pregnant, due to Atlanta’s massive pet overpopulation crisis, please get her spayed before she has a litter.
Keep the pet at least temporarily while you search for the dog’s family. If the pet does not get along with your pets or children, it’s ok to keep them separated. Have all the pets been spayed and neutered? Pets that have not been fixed typically do not get along with spayed/neutered pets.
Most pets and/or children require an adjustment period. Given a little time and help, almost any pets/children can learn to coexist. www.positively.com offers training tips for nearly every pet behavior issue.
If you have allergies, consider taking allergy medicine. Millions of people with pet allergies have pets. Usually one Zyrtec a day and regular washing of hands and bedding is enough to solve any issues. Studies also show that children who exposed to pets early are much less likely to develop allergies later in life.
Re-home the dog. Ask friends, neighbors, co-workers, family, etc., and be patient. It might take a while to find the pet a new home. To learn more about re-homing pets, visit https://resources.bestfriends.org/rehoming. Please be sure to screen potential adopters before placing the pet. Please do not post on Craigslist, where many pets fall victim to abuse.
If the pet has behavioral issues. Behavioral issues can often be managed through proper training. Make sure that all the pets are spayed/neutered. Otherwise, they often do not get along. Over-excited dogs may need more exercise, especially if he is crated for long periods.
Try to find a no-kill rescue group. Visit www.SPOTsociety.org to see a list of Atlanta rescue groups. Because of the huge pet overpopulation problem, Atlanta shelters stay full. These groups are usually made up of volunteers who are trying to save a lot of animals with very scant resources, so offer as big of a donation as possible to help cover food, shelter, and especially medical expenses. Please be patient when waiting for a return call; it might take a few days.