A player after picking up a lost item

"I picked up a lost item! ... I wonder if someone dropped this. Maybe I should look for the owner and return it?" —Animal Crossing: New Leaf

The Lost Item is an item which appears in the town in New Leaf. Lost items occur in multiple variations: a bag with a bear face, a mitten, a book or a blue bag with yellow string. If the owner is not found, it becomes a trash item but in turn it can be displayed inside the player's house.

Lost items are randomly generated in a town and appear on a random spot. Once picked up, the player will reveal it is lost and that it should be returned. The owner of the item is always one of the resident villagers, and the item cannot be dropped until the 2 days have passed. If it is not returned, the item name will change into something else like "mitten" for example.

To discover the owner all villagers must be spoken to until the owner is found. Once approached, the option to ask the villager if they have lost an item will appear as a conversation option. If the villager does not own it, they will tell the player to keep looking.

Once the player has found the owner, the villager will reward the player with an item for finding it, such as furniture or clothing, or occasionally, fruit, even possibly the neighbor's picture too.

If the item is brought to Copper/Booker they will inform the player that it was good that they brought the item in but they cannot leave their post. They will then ask the player to find the owner of the item.

Lost items return in Pocket Camp via an update. Unlike New Leaf, the lost items' owner doesn't have to be searched for. If a villager wants to talk to the player and the player does so, they will sometimes say that they lost an item. If the player offers to find it, that villager will give a hint on what the villager was doing at a location when they lost the item. In the event that the player manages to somehow hunt down the lost item without being informed beforehand, that lost item's owner will approach the player and have a different line of dialogue. Lost items are now labeled as such like "lost book" for example. They can also now be found by shaking trees or fishing, and new items that can be lost were introduced, such as a bottle. When the player finds the item and returns to the campsite, they will be rewarded, and the player will gain Heart Points.