Why are missing pets rarely found alive

The STMZ is always open to frequently asked questions We are happy to share our knowledge about the search for missing and found animals. In the following we present the concerns that reach us most frequently.

It is not uncommon for a veterinarian to have an agreement with a local animal welfare organization or an animal shelter, which shares the costs and in return benefits from special rates for vaccinations or neutering. In some places, the public purse also bears the costs. Sick or injured wild animals such as foxes, deer or birds of prey that belong to the respective hunting society or the canton [12.3.5], on the other hand - with the exception of life-saving first aid - may only be treated with their consent and after the costs have been paid.

At least initial medical care to save the animal's life and alleviate its pain is a matter of course for many veterinarians. So that your fee claim does not become too high, you do not have to undertake any complex treatment, unless the person delivering expressly requests this and guarantees payment. If the consignor refuses to cover at least part of the costs, however, he has neither a right to information nor to co-determination as to what should happen to the found animal after the treatment.

For the cat finder, this means: If the cat owner can be found out later, he or she has to pay for the veterinarian's fee anyway - at least as long as he is the owner, i.e. for at least two months [5.4.2]. There is a so-called management without an order [13.3.3]: The finder only did what a responsible pet owner would have done, i.e. acted on behalf of the pet owner who has to pay for the veterinary costs. However, if the owner cannot be found and the cat is referred by the veterinarian or an animal shelter after the transfer of ownership period has expired, the new owner must pay at least part of the medical costs. In contrast to the finder [5.4.2], the veterinarian is not legally obliged to report the found animal to the cantonal registration office. Usually the vet will do this anyway.