There's nothing more distressing for an owner than finding out that their pet hasn't come home for their cat food in the evening or isn't asleep in their basket when they go to bed.

However, every year many people have to go through this distressing experience of dealing with a lost or stolen cat, and many of these will never be reunited with their feline friend.

But now one animal charity is joining forces with the leading search service for pets in the UK to help owners find their missing moggies. Cat's Protection centres and branches are now able to direct people to the Animal Search UK website from their online lost and found pages, in a move they hope will see more owners being reunited with their four-legged friends.

"Our branches and centres have been offered the opportunity to direct people from their lost and found pages to the Animal Search UK site so that they can register pets on a national database," said Lee Bishop, Cats Protection's website manager. "We hope that this will increase the chances of pets being reunited with their owners."

Not only does Animal Search UK have a national database but it also offers one of the largest networks of Pet Patrollers with over 20,000 volunteers on the lookout for any type of lost or found pet throughout the UK.

Pet Patrollers in the local area are alerted when a pet is reported as missing so they can keep a look out for the animal.

Tom Watkins, former police officer and founder of Animal Search UK, said that the website is free to use and has a number of features to help find missing animals.

He added: "Not only does it enable users to add up to four photos of a missing family pet, or in fact a pet that has been found straying, it also has a sophisticated mapping system that automatically matches lost and found reports dependent on their location in relation to one another."

Written by: Hannah