Safe and Sound: The Importance of Pet Microchipping
Responsible pet owners go to great lengths to keep their pets safe–fenced-in yards, leashed walks, collars and ID tags, etc. However, despite our best efforts, accidents can and do happen. All it takes is one door accidentally left open for a four-legged escape artist to make a break for it.
For most pet owners, the thought of a beloved dog or cat going missing is truly frightening. The only thing worse is the possibility that you may never see them again. Fortunately, pet microchipping is an easy and effective way to increase the chances of reuniting with your missing pet.
Pet microchipping uses a syringe to insert a tiny encapsulated computer chip just under the skin between your pet’s shoulder blades. This chip’s only purpose is to hold a unique number, which corresponds to your contact information in the microchip company’s database.
In the event your pet goes missing and turns up at an animal shelter or veterinary hospital, an employee will scan your pet using a handheld microchip scanner. The employee will then call the microchip database and give them the ID number that appears on the scanner screen. Once everything is complete, a database employee will contact you with your pet’s whereabouts.
Some pet owners are reluctant to microchip because they’re worried it may hurt their pet, or they’re uncomfortable at the thought of a computer chip inside their pet’s body. The team at Bowman Veterinary Hospital wants to assure you that microchipping works and having your pet microchipped is completely safe!
- Each chip is encapsulated in a nontoxic, biocompatible glass sheath that’s designed to stay in place and not migrate to another part of the body.
- Microchips don’t have batteries or any other internal power source. They’re activated only when scanned with a microchip scanner. This technology is similar to what’s used in passports and credit cards.
- Microchips don’t utilize GPS technology, so neither you nor your pet’s location can be tracked.
Pet Microchipping Works
Statistically, 1 in 3 pets will go missing during their lifetime. The National Humane Society estimates that only 2-5% of cats and 30% of dogs are ever reunited with their families. Pet microchipping can significantly increase these odds. In a recent study of animal shelters:
- 52% of microchipped dogs were returned to their homes compared with 22% of dogs who were not microchipped.
- 30% of microchipped cats were returned to their homes compared with 2% of cats who were not microchipped.
If you have additional questions about pet microchipping or would like to schedule an appointment, please don’t hesitate to contact the team at Bowman Veterinary Hospital.