Each year, an estimated 8 million dogs and cats wind up in animal shelters across the country, many of which have become separated from their loving human families. Of these lost pets, less than 30% of dogs and only 5% of cats are ever reunited with their family members.
Besides the ever-important collar and ID tags (which pets should wear at all times), having your pet microchipped may be the best way to increase the odds of being reunited should he or she become lost.
We are passionate about pet microchipping here at Animal Kind Veterinary Hospital, and are excited to educate our clients about this wonderful technology.
How Pet Microchipping Works
Pet microchipping is safe, easy, and relatively painless. The chip is about the size of a grain of rice and is inserted, via syringe, underneath your pet’s skin between the shoulder blades. It is no more or less painful for your pet than a standard vaccination.
Because the microchip is encased in biocompatible glass and has no internal battery or power source, it is considered inert and completely safe for your pet. The microchip is held in place by the connective tissue, and will not migrate to any other parts of your pet’s body. Since microchips do not contain a GPS, your pet cannot be “tracked”, thereby maintaining your privacy.
In the event your pet is lost and turned into an animal shelter or veterinary hospital, his or her microchip will be scanned with a microchip reader. Your stored contact information will appear on the screen, allowing the shelter or hospital worker to notify you of your pet’s whereabouts.
A microchip is only as good as the information it contains. Besides registering with the microchip company initially, be sure to contact them immediately if your contact information changes.
A 2009 study done by the Journal Of The American Veterinary Medical Association found that 58.1% of microchipped companion animals that ended up in shelters were correctly registered with the microchip’s database. By registering your microchip and updating it any time your contact information changes, you will be greatly increasing your odds of finding your lost pet.
Of course, if you have any questions about pet microchipping, or would like to schedule an appointment to have your pet microchipped, don’t hesitate to give us a call.