Reasons to Microchip Your Pet
One of the most effective means of protecting your dog or cat from being lost or stolen is microchipping them. Let’s take a closer look at what a “microchip” is and how the process of microchipping your pet works. Microchips are tiny computer chips, about the size of a grain of rice. They are implanted under your pet’s skin by a veterinarian using a large bore needle without anaesthesia, similar to a simple vaccination. Each microchip carries a registration number that is associated with the owner’s name and contact information. This information is added to a pet registry service offered by the chip manufacturer.
The registry information on the chips can be read using a handheld reader that displays the information so that the owner can be identified. Most shelters and veterinarians have these readers and can scan the pet and contact the owner if the pet is lost.
Benefits of Microchipping:
Most pet owners buy their dogs and cats collars and add a name tag with the pet’s name and their phone number. These are great but outdated. They can easily break, fall off, or even the name or phone number can wear off of the tag over time. The microchip is permanent and can’t be separated from the pet.
- If your dog or cat is lost or stolen, the chip and its registration is definitive proof of ownership. This is particularly helpful in the case of stolen pets when ownership might be in dispute.
- A chip greatly increases the likelihood that your pet will be returned to you if they are lost. Several recent studies show that cats with microchips are 20 times more likely to be returned to their owner and chipped dogs are returned 2.5 more than unchipped dogs. That’s a pretty significant difference and with over 10 million pets being lost each year, you want to do everything you can to ensure your pet finds its way back to your home.
- Finally, microchips last a lifetime. Once implanted, you don’t have to worry about them, although it is a good idea to have your vet scan your pet each year to guard against any malfunction.
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