Every year, millions of pets run away. In fact, one in three pets will become lost at some point in their life. A registered microchip gives a pet their best chance of returning home to their family. Fortunately, it’s incredible easy, fast, and inexpensive to have your pet microchipped! In this article, we’ll cover the basics of microchipping. You’ll learn how it works, why it’s so important to do for your dog or cat, and the easy steps you can take right now to protect your pet!
What’s a microchip?
A microchip is a tiny device (about the size of a grain of sand) that has a unique code in it. This code is linked to a national database that contains your contact information. When a shelter or veterinary practice finds a lost pet, they scan the pet for a microchip to see if they can return the pet to their family. This is important, because collars and tags are often lost when a pet goes missing. Because of this, microchipped pets are returned home at a much higher rate than non-microchipped pets.
How does the procedure work?
It’s pretty similar to a vaccination – it doesn’t even require anesthetic. The microchip is injected via needle into the loose skin between your pet’s shoulder blades. It’s about as painless as a vaccination, and the entire procedure only takes a few seconds. It’s also an inexpensive procedure for the pet owner. Once it’s implanted, the microchip will work for the entire life of your pet!
Can a microchip replace my pet’s collar tags?
No – collar tags are the quickest way to identify a pet owner, and typically only shelters and veterinarians have access to a microchip scanner. This means if your pet is found by a regular citizen, a collar is the quickest way to ensure they’re returned. But collars and tags often come off when a pet goes missing. Using tags and a microchip together is the best way to have a lost pet returned home.
How much does microchipping really help?
According to the AVMA (the American Veterinary Medical Association), a study showed that at a shelter, dogs brought in without a microchip were returned about 22% of the time. Dogs with a microchip were returned to their family about 52% of the time. Cats without microchips were returned only 2% of the time, while cats with a microchip were returned about 39% of the time.
What should I do now?
Call us! If you’re not sure if your pet is already microchipped, we can scan them and tell you. If they are, we can help you update the contact information (which is especially important if you’ve recently moved). If your pet isn’t microchipped yet, we’ll schedule an appointment to get your pet microchipped. You’ll have peace of mind, and it just might save your pet’s life!