View current shelter capacity

Pet Resource Center Hours

Microchips & Resources: Daily 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Service line closes at 6 p.m.)

Animal Intake: Temporarily CLOSED

Getting a Pet Reunited

It happens to the best of us: Sometimes our pets make plans without us. If you’ve lost a pet or found a pet, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know in our Pet Reunification Guide (Spanish version).

Quick Info

If you've FOUND a pet:

If you've LOST a pet: 

Additional places to post lost & found pets:

To reclaim a pet at the shelter:

  • Visit Austin Animal Center as soon as you can! Our Reclaim Department is open every day of the week 11am-6pm.
  • If you cannot immediately visit the shelter, call 512-978-0556 or email

If You’ve Found a Pet 

Most animals are found close to home (on average just a few houses away) and a neighbor has a MUCH higher chance of helping a pet get home than a shelter does. If you’re able to hold onto a stray pet while you look for the owner you’re increasing the odds that they’ll find their family while helping shelters save space for sick and injured pets. That’s a win-win!  

There are many ways to help a pet get home. Most owners are found through microchips and social media.  

  • View pets who have been reported lost in the area.
  • Text ‘foundatx’ to (844) 764-2125.
    You will receive texts with proven tips that guide you through the family-finding process.
  • Scan for a microchip.  
    Microchips are tiny permanent IDs located under a pet’s skin, usually located at the back of their neck or by their shoulder blades. Local vet clinics, 24 hour emergency pet hospitals, Austin Fire Departments, and City of Austin Recreation Centers can scan for a microchip for free. For more information on scanning, view our microchip scanning how-to guide.
  • Create a Found Report.
    Let Austin Animal Center know you’ve found a pet by creating a ‘Found Report’. The pet will be posted on our website through 24petconnect. The pet will stay active in our system for 14 days. The owner can contact you through 24petconnect or if the owner sees the photo on our website and reaches out to us, we’ll put them in touch with you. 
  • Post on Social Media. 
    Post on Austin Lost and Found Pets Facebook, Nextdoor, and Craigslist both in ‘Pets’ and ‘Lost and Found’.  
  • Learn about our Finder to Foster program
    This new resource available to found pets is vital in helping them be reunited with their owner. The shelter will provide you with initial supplies and resources to set you both up for success. 


Healthy Found Cats 

  • Around 35% of owners allow their cats to free roam, sometimes without visible identification like a collar or nametag. In Austin, it’s very common for people to let their own cats outside, or to be a caretaker to a free-roaming cat without an identifiable owner, also called a ‘community cat’. Community Cats can be friendly or adverse to people. Try the paper collar trick to see if this cat has someone looking out for it: 
  • Print thisPaper collar template 


    Found a kitten? View our guide. 

    Email our Community Cats program at for more services available to you and community cats. 


Shelter Intake

The shelter should be the last resort for health found animals. Keeping found pets in their community significantly increases their chances of being reunited with their family, and helps the shelter save space for animals that truly need to be there. Just holding onto a pet for 2 days is a HUGE help.

Our Pet Resource Center can provide supplies like a crate, food, leash, and collar to help you hold onto the pet while you look for the owner. 

Shelter intake is currently closed except for emergencies due to overcrowding. 


If You’ve Lost a Pet  

Unique or Exotic Pets

Austin Animal Center takes in all types of unique pets, from tortoises to ferrets. 

If you found a unique pet and you’re unsure how to care for this animal please do not let it go. We will house the animal while we attempt to contact the owner or we will partner with an experienced rescue group to get it the care it needs. Call 311 for Animal Protection. 

Some rescue groups do accept animals directly. If you’re not seeing your pet check in with our partners to see if someone has brought your pet to them. 


Call 311 for sick, injured, or abandoned wildlife. Our Animal Protection Officers will transfer non-critical injured wildlife to Austin Wildlife Rescue. Animal Services does not remove or relocate healthy native wildlife; call 311 for humane solutions.  


For more details on everything lost and found, view our Pet Reunification guide (Spanish).  


​​​To Reclaim Your Pet from Austin Animal Center 

  • If you have found your pet in our shelter, please visit us immediately to reclaim. Pets are held for 3 business days and then are released for adoption or transfer.
  • If you cannot visit the shelter, please call our Reclaim Hotline at 512-978-0556 or email (hotline is answered daily during business hours).
  • Bring proof of ownership like vet records or a photo ID of your pet to reclaim.
  • Bring your photo ID-- we accept Driver's License, US or International passport, government or other official photo identification and Mexican Consulate cards.


LostATX and FoundATX Texting Programs 


Agreement to Receive Text Messages 
By providing your mobile number, you agree that Austin Animal Center may send you text messages (including SMS and MMS). Austin Animal Center will send you up to twenty (20) messages per month. Message and data rates may apply. 

You may opt out at any time by texting the word STOP to phone number (844) 764-2125. For help, send the word HELP to (844) 764-2125. 

You agree to notify us of any changes to your mobile number and update your account with us to reflect this change. 

Austin Animal Center does not store your personal information for this service. Phone numbers and other information are stored by Simple Texting. Simple Texting's privacy policy can be found at

Will I be charged for the text messages I receive? 
Though Austin Animal Center will never charge you for the text messages you receive, depending on your phone plan, you may be charged by your mobile provider. 



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