Pets lost during explosion

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Many families affected by the explosion in a south side neighborhood Saturday are still looking for missing pets.

It's not clear how many pets are still missing, but since Saturday's explosion inside the Richmond Hill neighborhood, two dogs have been reunited with their families.

Tuesday, Animal Care and Control, with help from animal groups, IndyFeral and FACE, have set up several traps inside and around the neighborhood to catch pets that might be afraid to return home.

"With all the chaos and things down there, animals try to get out of that scene," spokesman Adam Garrett said.

With homes destroyed and belongings scattered, pets may have been left behind after Saturday's explosion.

Dog traps and smaller cat traps have been placed in the neighborhood to help find animals thought to be gone.

"The whole idea behind the traps is that the animal is not going to get hurt. So, the animal comes in and when their little foot steps on the pressure plate, the door closes behind it," Garrett said.

The family of Dion and Jennifer Longworth, who died in the explosion, are looking for the couple's dog, "Pepper." Pepper did have a microchip, but the family has put up flyers in the neighborhood to find the dog.

"Sounds like a lot of people are out looking for it, but again, when animals are in this situation, they can go great distances so the whole community could be on the look out for that," Garrett said.

Animal Care and Control is also housing a cat found near the explosion site. The three-year-old male is being held at the South Harding location.

Officer Garrett says Saturday's explosion is a good reminder to make sure your pet is able to be tracked.

"Looking forward, if you have an animal, make sure it gets microchipped. That's one sure-fire way, if somebody picks up the animal, that it gets reunited with you," he said.

The officer estimates only a third of all pets have microchips.

Animal Care and Control on Harding Street offers microchips for $10, no appointment needed.

If your pet has a microchip, make sure the contact information is up to date by calling the company.