Cats in Your Community: When do you call?
July 9, 2024

Many people wonder what to do when they see a cat outside that they don’t recognize. Deciding what to do about a found or unfamiliar cat can be challenging. Should you take the cat to the local shelter immediately? Should you advertise to see if it has a family? Should you bring it inside? Keep it? Rehome it yourself?

The PEI Humane Society recommends taking a few steps before making any decisions related to cats found in your community. If you see a cat you don’t know in your neighborhood, follow these steps to figure out what to do:

Assume any cat you see likely has a home nearby. If you’re concerned about the cat, watch its behaviour and movement. Is it injured? Watch for a limp or obvious markers like blood. Is is walking well? Are its eyes clear? Are they weepy or crusty?  Keep in mind that older cats can have a scruffier appearance than younger cats. If the cat is healthy, you don’t need to react right away. Snap a photo on a smartphone and try posting a picture to local Lost Pet Facebook pages (PEILPN is the most popular) to see if the cat is just visiting your area. This is also a good way to show an owner that’s looking for their lost pet where they might be.

If the cat is injured or ill, it should be seen by a veterinarian, call the shelter (902-892-1190) and we will direct you on next steps. If this is after-hours, call our 24hr emergency line: 902-892-1191.

Many cats we see at the PEI Humane Society are not microchipped. We highly recommend that if you have a cat that goes outside at all, it should be microchipped. Since many cats can look alike and be easily confused, a microchip ensures the shelter is able to call you right away when/if your cat comes in.

Thank you for your concern about cats in your community. If you have other questions about what to do about a cat in your community, email us at

Related Posts