If you are seeing a dog frequently roam an area off leash with no owners nearby this could be a lost or abandoned pet. If you are local to the Southern California area please feel free to contact us with details on this dog so we may be of assistance and help guide you on what to do.
Many stray animals were once someones pet. We can never assume that a loose or found animal doesn't have owners. Regardless of how the animal may appear, it could have been lost for a long period of time and appear to be a stray with no owner. It could have been found and dumped by someone but have an owner who is dearly missing it, from a completely different neighborhood or city.
There are a few things that can be done but it really depends on the situation. If it is safe to do so, try securing the dog with a leash or in an enclosed area like a fenced yard or garage. Please make sure not to put a newly found animal with any of your pets. Please keep them separate as you do not know how other animals will react. Check with your neighbors to see if the dog belongs to one of them. If not, notify your local community of the found dog (see our resource page). If you have the animal safely secured you should also notify your local Animal Control Agency. They may be able to assist in having the dog picked up.
Its really hard to determine if an "outdoor" cat is actually lost or just out for a walk. If the animal appears to be healthy and has identification on it the odds are it has a home close by. If you see a cat that appears lost, ill or in distress its safe to assume that help should be given to ensure the safety of this cat. Posting on nextdoor.com about the cat will often provide information as to whether the cat has an owner or is lost from close by perhaps.
If you are safely able to pick up and secure the cat and call the identification tags, please do so. If you can get the cat into a crate you can take it to be scanned for a microchip. You can also post flyers in the area asking if anyone knows the cat.
Its always best to call a local Wildlife Rescue in your area to help with wildlife. They are usually available to help injured wildlife or you can also try a local emergency vet hospital as often they will take in some wildlife like injured birds or squirrels until they can be transferred over to a wildlife care facility.