The Importance of Microchips in Pets
When my mother and I adopted our cat Shi from the Meriden Humane Society a few months ago, one of the first things that we did was make an appointment with our vet for a microchip implant. Already having a dog with the microchip, I can attest that the procedure is definitely worth the time and money to have it done. You can’t put a price on the comfort of knowing that, if your pet becomes lost, the odds that he or she will be returned home are significantly greater if they are equipped with a microchip.
A microchip implant is a tiny chip, about the size of a large grain of rice, which is placed under the skin of an animal. This chip can be used to quickly identify a lost animal using the unique identification number imbedded on the chip. A veterinarian uses a simple procedure to insert the chip underneath the skin of the animal at the back of the neck between the shoulder blades. This is not a surgical procedure and does not require sedation in most cases. Although pricing varies, a microchip typically costs between $30-$50 to be implanted and about $20 to register the chip into the database.
It is important to spread the word about microchips for many reasons. In the case that a lost cat or dog is found without identification collars, the pet can be immediately taken to any vet to be scanned for a microchip. If a microchip had been implanted, all of the animal’s information would be found in the system and in turn the pet would be able to be quickly reunited with their family. Microchips also help to prevent pets from being a stolen. If someone steals a dog or cat then decides to take them to the vet for a checkup, the animal may possibly be scanned for a chip at the visit. If the chip ID number is run and the information in the database doesn’t match the information that was provided by the person who stole the animal, the case will be questioned. It is important to also note that most vets will not automatically scan a pet without cause. If your pet goes missing, I would suggest making flyers with your pet’s picture and information and bring them to all of the vets in the surrounding area. This will ensure that if someone else brings an animal in that matches the description of your lost cat or dog, they will be scanned.
Written by: Randi Tomaszewski, Professional Pet Sitter for Sarah’s Pet Sitting