I was away from home on May 9, when we had that nasty storm. When my dogsitter arrived in the morning, my red heeler Sage in her panic had tried to dig a hole through my living room door and finally pried open the panel on the dog door, and climbed over or pushed through the 5 ft high fence. When I returned the next day, I started the search.
I found really good suggestions for finding and approaching a lost dog on MissingPetPartnership.com. I have contacted the shelters and vets, put up hundreds of flyers, hand-delivered posters to businesses, delivery people, and neighbors, had automated phone calls sent to 1200 neighbors (LostMyDoggie.com), and sent postcards to 3000 people (PetHarbor.com). I posted on Craig's List and on Santa Fe Lost and Found Pets. I have a large bright sign on the rear window of my car. I have gone out to check three dead dogs. We've spoken to the DOT (who do not have a requirement that dogs be scanned for chips or have the owner called if it was wearing a tag). I set out food/water stations at four different places where people thought they'd seen her but with no results.
I got several phone calls from these methods early on, but some were not credible (sighted dog had cropped tail or was blue, etc). One we were able to return to its owner. Some could have been any of the many brownish-red dogs running loose in the Pojoaque Valley. No one took a photo of the dog that they saw and so it's not clear who they saw. Sage is still missing.
I have now gotten a Whistle (Whistle.com) tag for my other dog. It's not perfect since it has a relatively short battery life and is partly dependent on our miserable cell phone coverage here in the valley, but it will notify me when he leaves home and get a GPS reading every 6-30 minutes (depending on your settings). You pay a monthly subscription fee. The GPS collars with long battery life and no subscription cost several hundred dollars but don't talk to your cell phone. If Sage had been wearing a Whistle tag when she ran off, she might have been found within the first 24 hrs. At least there would have been a chance of recovering her while the battery was working and she was still wearing her collar (there are limitations). With every thunderclap, assuming she has survived, she has probably run further. But it might save your dog.
I am still hoping that someone will find her and that a vet or shelter will scan her microchip or that some DOT employee will have the kind heart to call the number on her tag.
Sage is a female merle-like (various with the seasons and lighting) red heeler with a bushy tail, about 9 yrs old. She has a red mask over her right eye and a brownish-red spot on her back. She was wearing a red nylon collar with a Home Again tag when she escaped. Please call 505-455-7745 if you spot her (and please take a photo).