Lost Your Pet? Found a Stray?

If you have lost your pet or found a stray animal, please make contacting Mitchell County Animals Rescue a priority. Call us, and/or send us a message (preferably with a photo) by email or via Facebook. We frequently have people posting photos of lost & found animals to our Facebook page, so it is a great place to start! When strays are brought in to us, we will post them there as well.

Stray Animal Policy

There is no animal control officer in Mitchell County to pick up strays. Therefore, we have to rely on individuals in the community to bring strays to the shelter. Whenever possible, we ask that you call us before coming with a stray or abandoned animal. All animals turned in to the shelter will be immediately posted on Facebook to notify the public in order to find the owner. 

In accordance with NC law, any stray animal will be kept in quarantine for 72 hours awaiting the owner to claim him/her. If after that time no one claims them, they become the property of MCAR and they will be spay/neutered, and placed up for adoption. In order to reclaim a stray pet as your own, be prepared to show proof of ownership such as matching photographs, vet records, microchip information. You will also be charged a fee for your pet’s care.

Download a copy of our full STRAY ANIMAL POLICY AND PROCEDURES here.


This section refers to each specific animal being turned in or picked up as a stray. Change of ownership and or address does not nullify charges. The Following rules apply when an animal is brought into the shelter as a stray multiple times in 365 days. 

  • First time stray reclaim of animal: Within 72 hours: Owner picks up and is required to pay the Return to Owner Fee Vaccination and Meds reimbursement. $10 per vaccine and other fees to be determined by staff. 

  • Second time stray reclaim: within 72 hours, Owners pay a Return to Owner fee of $25.00

  • Third time stray reclaim: owners pay Return to Owner fee of $100 OR do the adoption paperwork and get pet fixed/chipped, etc if the pet is not currently altered.   

  • If a pet is turned in as a stray more than three times in a year, a $250 fine will be owed each time the pet is brought in.