Photo courtesy The Rancho Coastal Humane Society.

The San Diego Humane Society Tuesday unveiled a tool pet owners can use to reunite with lost pets faster.

The Lost2Found tool is a cell phone text program that provides automated texts with step-by-step instructions to help people search for their missing loved ones.

Last year, the SDHS took in nearly 19,000 stray pets and only 22% of them were reunited with their families, officials said. One in three pets will become lost at some point during their lives, according to the SDHS.

“Nobody thinks it will happen to them — until it does,” said Gary Weitzman, SDHS president and CEO. “Now, if the unthinkable happens, our new Lost2Found texting platform can help pet parents navigate a very stressful time.”

The tool is a one-way communication system that texts tips and support at strategic intervals and provides resources. Pet owners are sent 28 messages over a 60-day time period, including a comprehensive list of tools, helpful tips and timely information.

The information directs owners to San Diego Humane Society’s website, online groups and partner organizations.

If your pet goes missing, text “LOST” to 858-SAN-LOST (726-5678) to start using the Lost2Found platform. You can also view stray pets who have come in to the SDHS facility, and find more useful tips — including measures you can take to prevent your pet from getting lost — at

The program was unveiled Tuesday, which is “Change a Pet’s Life Day.”

–City News Service