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Puss ran off the house, any suggestions?


Savannah Adult
She finally made her way out of the house somehow this morning after numerous tries since she got her first heat a few months ago. Any ideas to lure her back to our house ? She isn't interested in catnip and we got a lot of male house cats roaming freely inside the neighbourhood. I'm desperate for your suggestions :(

P.S. we live in a gated community and we let everyone know and put her pictures around the gated community.


Reincarnated cat Moderator
I will pray for her to come home. All I know to do. I'm new to Savannahs. But I'm not new to worry and heartache.


Savannah Adult
Yes she does, i ran all over the community with the toy with a bell on it and repeatedly called her name but no signs of her :(

Shall i go out look for her till i find her or wait for her to come home? We live in a community with villas and there are around 300 yards. I really dont know how i will find her :(

Chris Elliott

Savannah Super Cat
I've had a couple of escapees and they both stayed close to the house.

One went out a sliding glass door that somehow got left open at night, as I was getting ready to leave for a trip in the morning, and was nowhere to be found.

After much calling, she finally started calling back as it became light--20 minutes before I /had/ to leave. She wouldn't come to me, but I called to my wife to open the sliding door. She ran inside.

Another cat escaped as we arrived home after picking him up from my brother. Despite not knowing the area at all, he stayed close, in our carport for part of the time. He would run whenever we saw him. My brother came down to help. After 6 days, my wife asked the neighbors to keep their large bully of a cat indoors, and I saw him come to the food bowl in the carport just after midnight. My brother went out and was able to pick him up after a bit.

Some of the best advice I received is to:

- let people know--neighborhood forums or lists, flyers, posters, craigslist
- leave a door or window open with food inside
- use a surveillance camera that works in the dark and can alarm on movement
- keep calling and leaving out food

Here's part of a thread I received:

More people have tried the laundry and food tricks shown below and they have worked.

The first two are in response to the advice Susie gave in the email I've copied below them. As you'll see, a couple of people have tried her dirty laundry and open window tricks and they worked! Obviously, you'd need to close the door to whatever room you choose, so you'd know your cat came back.

The rest are from various listservs.



I did leave some laundry (his beloved blanket, among other things) in the yard yesterday evening and left open the window of the guest room, downstairs (it's just below the balcony from where he jumped; I had also left a mackerel pate in the lower part of the balcony). And because I was so awfully worried, I decided to sleep in the guest room ... and there he came, sometime around 5-6 am

Dear Susie,

I did keep my window open, and I was able to get him to come to me when I called!
Thanks so much!


Suja, I encourage you to open your windows even a bit, and put dirty laundry out in the yard. So he can smell your scent. That was suggested to me when my indoor cat got out and I did just that. Ava was missing for 10 days but one morning I awoke to her sitting on me in my bed. She had pried open the window until she could get in. Keep the faith. Maybe some flyers on telephone poles, too. Good luck. Susie

1. Ask neighbors to check crawlspaces and other such hiding places.

2. Look for a Facebook page for lost cats/pets for your area

Lost Cat Behavior Info
Tips for finding a lost pet
Tips to find a dog or cat

4. From Pat,
I'm an Operation Catnip feral TNR cat trapper and a 20-year cat rescue veteran.

Rescue groups have discovered through decades of experience that most of these animals immediately find the nearest hiding place and stay there for up to one or two weeks, until their hunger becomes so great that they begin searching for food. At that point, if they find a baited trap their hunger nearly always overcomes their fear of the trap and they are recaptured and reunited with their owners.

You can borrow a live trap from Animal Rescue people

I've helped many friends, neighbors, and adopters of my former foster kitties to recover their lost pets in this manner, so I know it does work. And, provided food and water is made available outside for the escaped pet from the first moment it goes missing and, after the first couple of days, is placed only inside a humane trap, most of these pets can be rescued. As long as food is available, most of them never venture further than 1/2 mile away from their home and most are recovered in their own yards.

Also post on Craig's List, and place flyers in strategic locations around the neighborhood.

It's really important for owners of missing animals to visit Animal Control's facility at least every 3 days to ensure their missing pet is not there.

5. HomeAgain Pets:

6. From the head of an animal rescue/foster group (which was in response to a dog posting):

FACEBOOK!!!!! CRAIG'S LIST!!!! LOST DOGS OF NC. We were able to recover our rescue dobi who took flight after being adopted. She had feral tendencies, so she was a long shot, for sure. Between these three sites, she was reunited with our rescue after being gone for 6 days. I will post this on our FB. Prayers for a safe return.

Hope this helps. I'm confident you'll get her back.


Brigitte Cowell

Staff member
Yes she does, i ran all over the community with the toy with a bell on it and repeatedly called her name but no signs of her :(

Shall i go out look for her till i find her or wait for her to come home? We live in a community with villas and there are around 300 yards. I really dont know how i will find her :(
YES! Get out there looking! My advice is that there are not too many flyers to put up...put them everywhere and make sure there is a good clear color picture on them. The flyers not only help people be alert that there is a cat needing to go home but also the number of those flyers tells people how very eager you are to have your cat back and make them more inclined to check if the flash out the corner of their eye is your cat after all. Knock on neighbor's doors and make sure they know how desperate you are to find your girl.

Unfortunately, a cat in heat IS going to be desperate for a mate and so this kind of thing happens. She may not be at all interested in finding a human to help her until after she's satisfied her hormonal needs.

Post her as lost on Craigslist and renew that every second day...also check for found cats there. There are lots of online sites you might list her on etc. And Facebook is a good option. Email us at with a pic of your girl and some contact info and location and I can get her on our FB page too!

Is she microchipped?

Humane traps are a good idea... many local shelters or rescue groups might have them.

Finding out if there is anyone in your community that feeds cats..either ferals or leaves bowls of food outside for their outdoor kittties... it might be somewhere she learns to go for a meal. And if there are outdoor cats if there is an unneutered male then likely that IS where she is...

As Chris says, even if your girl is microchipped, visit the local Animal Control and shelters... sometimes they miss a microchip. But also good for them to have a flyer of your lost cat in case they find her.

I don't know if you have other cats, if not then leaving a door open or accessible window open might be a good idea...I have heard of cats finding their way home that way. If you have other pets, you can shut them up in a room to be able to do that also. Depends on how safe your area is, I couldn't do that where I live!

Good luck!


Staff member
You've gotten a lot of great advice here. I would add a couple of suggestions... first, put her litterbox outside so she can smell it and know it's where home is. Also try warming her food a bit and setting it outside so that the scent is stronger and she can smell it from further away. There are also some pet alert systems available such as Find Toto: that may help alert your neighbors.

When looking for her in the neighborhood, go out at night with a strong flashlight - flash it under every bush, porch, or anyplace she might be hiding. When cats are afraid they will not necessarily respond to you or come to you, but you will be able to see the reflection of their eyes in the light and locate them that way. It is unfortunate that you have other cats wandering the neighborhood as this means you may have a lot of other visitors in your yard as you attempt to lure your baby home, but hopefully she will be one of them.

Once you've gotten her home you need to think about how to keep her from escaping again. There are several options - build a 'double door' entranceway on your doors so that if she gets out one door the next will stop her until you can snatch her up (some have accomplshed this by enclosing their porch). Alternatively, you can consider building her an outdoor enclosure that she can gain access to through a doggie door - if she already has free access outside she may be less intrigued with what on the other side of the front door. Also, there are a couple of threads on this forum about GPS systems for pets so that you can track them down if they do escape - you can find them by using the Search box. John Campbell has one of these devices for Elsa - fortunately, he has not had to use it yet.

Pam Flachs

Savannah Super Cat
All excellent advice and tips to find your girl.

I'd also add enlisting the help of neighborhood children. Give them a flyer with your kitty's pic and information (include your phone number)...and offer a cash reward to whoever finds her.

Prayers she is soon home with you...and get her spayed asap!


Savannah Adult
Thank you guys very much for the helpful tips. I followed each and every tip that you've said and whatever i've found on internet.

We've finally found her under a neighbour's car at 6 a.m. She was close to our home.

So she's back home now, seems like she hasnt slept a bit so now she's enjoying her home, purring and grooming herself :):)