Effective Poster Placement

Before putting posters up, make sure that they are an effective design.  If you put up posters that no one can read, it doesn’t matter how strategically you place them.  You can make posters more noticeable by using bright colors or attaching florescent poster board or florescent duct tape to the edges.  

Posters are most visible if you put them where cars have to stop or slow down.  This is especially important if you decide to use one of the smaller size posters.  Also make sure to place the posters so that they are facing oncoming traffic.  If you place them facing across the street, very few people driving or walking will notice them.

To determine poster locations, view a map of the area that your cat or dog went missing and create a perimeter of posters so that no one can enter or exit the area without seeing at least one of your posters.  The best way to do this is to place 2-4 posters at each major intersection and/or a single poster at each “T” intersection.   Within the immediate area (1/4 mile for cats and 1/2 – 1 mile for dogs) you should put up a poster at every intersection if possible.  See Online Maps for more information on how to maximize the effectiveness of your poster placement.

In general lost cat posters should be placed within 1/4 mile to 3 miles of the location that your cat went missing.  See the Search Action Plans for more detailed instructions given your situation.

Lost dog posters should be placed within 1 mile to 3 miles to start.  Depending on the age and breed of the dog, you may need to go out to 10 miles to 20 miles.  Dogs known for traveling long distances include sight hounds such as greyhounds, any scent hound such as beagles or bloodhounds, and sled dogs such as huskies.  See the Search Action Plans for more detailed instructions given your situation.

Poster Legalities

It is by far easiest to place posters on utility poles using a staple gun.  However, in many towns this may be illegal.  You may be able to check your local by-laws online or contact your Town Clerk.  A good indication of how strict your town may be about posting signs is how long tag sale signs stay up, and how many staples are already in the utility poles.   Other options include affixing signs with twine, zip-ties or duct tape.  I do not recommend nails.

If you cannot place posters on public property, than consider asking private property owners.  These posters might be attached to a fence or tree (please do not use staples or nails).  Alternatively, you could build or purchase poster stakes such as those used for political campaigns or open house signs.