Division of Animal Care & Control

Lost & Found

Kennel Hours


Monday10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Tuesday10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Wednesday10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Thursday10:00 am to 6:00 pm
Friday10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Saturday10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Sunday10:00 am to 3:00 pm


Animal Care and Control Officers (ACOs) are on the road every day from 7:00 am to 11:00 pm, responding to calls about stray animals, and lost dogs are brought in throughout the day.

The ages and breeds listed on dogs are typically best guesses, and pictures are often imperfect - so if you suspect that a dog could be yours, be sure to call us or visit the Cleveland City Kennel to see the dog for yourself.

If you have lost a pet in the City of Cleveland or a nearby area, here are some steps to follow. Don’t lose hope if you don’t find your dog right away; keep trying and checking back!

  1. Call our main line at 216-664-3069 to report details about your missing pet. If there is a potential match, check out the dog in-person!
  2. Visit our website, www.tinyurl.com/CleLostDogs, to see all dogs that were found as strays. Refresh or recheck the page frequently - it is updated throughout the day whenever a new dog is booked into the kennel, usually within an hour. If there’s any chance a dog could be yours, come look in-person.
  3. Post online! Share pictures of your missing pet with a description of where/when they went missing on social media. Utilize Lost/Found Facebook pages for the city or your neighborhood. Upload your missing pet’s information to websites like PawBoost and Petco Love Lost, which are databases of lost/found pets. CACC staff pay close attention to these sites - we might recognize your dog from seeing them online!
  4. Post physical fliers in your neighborhood (or in the area where the animal went missing) with your pet’s picture and talk to your neighbors. Most dogs that go missing are found close to home.
  5. Don’t give up! There have been many cases where an owner is reunited with their pet after weeks or more. Keep trying and don’t stop spreading the word. 


Important Information Regarding Found Animals

The kennel holds stray dogs for a minimum of 72 hours to give owners the opportunity to look for and claim their pet. Animals will not be adopted out before the stray hold. However, they may be transferred to the Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter during this time, as this facility can also legally complete a stray hold.



Reclaim Fees

For found dogs that have been taken to the kennel, there may be a reclamation fee if the dog is not licensed or microchipped. There may also be additional fees for daily care of the animal.  If you have difficulty paying to reclaim your animal, please let us know and we’ll work with you to find a solution.

The cost of the license fee depends on the time of year that the animal is reclaimed and is set by state policy. From December 1 to January 31, the fee is $21. From January 31 to November 30, the fee is $41. Licenses are available at the Division of Animal Care & Control. Microchips cost $10 and are required for any dog being reclaimed.

If you find a lost dog in the City of Cleveland, here are the steps to follow to help us reunite them with the owner:

  1. First, if it is possible to do so safely, try to secure the dog. You might be able to confine them in a fenced yard or use a makeshift leash. This will keep the dog safe from running off into traffic or elsewhere.
  2. Again, if possible to do so safely, check the dog for identification, including tags of any type (ID tag, license, Rabies tag, etc.). Most vet offices, in addition to shelters, can scan an animal for a microchip.
  3. Call our main line at 216-664-3069 to leave a detailed description of the pet, including where and when they were found. The Cleveland City Kennel is the place to bring stray dogs found within the City of Cleveland. However, we may give special directions for bringing the dog in. If the dog seems sick, they may need to go to the vet, first. Or, if we recognize the dog’s description from a missing pet report, we may be able to coordinate a direct handoff with the owner!
  4. Post online and hang physical fliers in your neighborhood about the found dog. Even if the dog ends up at the kennel, taking these steps can help to alert an owner that their dog was found. Many pets are found close to their original homes, and unfortunately, many people don’t know they should check with us when their pet goes missing.


How to Avoid Losing a Pet

No one wants their pet to go missing, but sometimes accidents happen! Here are some proactive steps to take to keep your pets securely at home, or to get them home more quickly if they do get lost.

  1. Photos
    Having a few clear, current photos of your pet can help if they ever go missing. Try to take photos from different angles, with at least one clearly showing their face and one clearly showing their body.
  2. Microchips
    Get your pet microchipped so that they have a permanent form of identification. Collars and tags can come loose. Microchips are as small as a grain of rice and are implanted under a dog’s skin, similar to getting a vaccination. Microchips (or chips) are not GPS trackers, but they store an owner’s contact information on it. Almost every shelter or vet’s office has a scanner that can read microchips. If your pet is already chipped, be sure the information is updated!
  3. Tags
    Make sure your pet is wearing some form of visible identification. This could be an ID tag attached to a collar or harness or a customized/embroidered collar. If your pet ever goes missing, someone might catch them and be able to contact you without the animal ever needing to come to the kennel.
  4. Supervision
    Keep your pets securely on-leash or in a totally fenced-in yard when outside, and don’t leave them unattended. Even if your pet has never wandered off before, don’t assume they never will! Also note that there are leash laws in most parks/public areas of the City of Cleveland.