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The Benefits of Microchipping Your Pet

The Benefits of Microchipping Your Pet

Have you ever lost a pet? Did you recover that pet? If so, what methods did you use to recover your pet? These are all great questions that I asked my friends at a recent party that I gave. To my surprise about half of the 30 guests had lost a pet. Out of those only 5 recovered their lost pet. And none of my friends had their pets microchipped. So let's look at the benefits of microchipping your pet.

The next question I asked was: Why didn’t you have your pet microchipped? The two main reasons that stood out were 1) it was too expensive, and 2) there was no proof that it worked. Now the battle was on.

The Cost

The first thing that people consider when the topic of microchipping arises is that of cost. Most people believe that this is a high-tech procedure and that it is expensive to acquire. Also, most people believe that this is a surgical procedure and requires a veterinarian. Both could not be further from the truth.

First, microchipping is a medium-tech procedure. This is performed by veterinarians, animal shelters, breeders, and occasionally by private groups that are involved in animal welfare.

All that is basically required to microchip an animal is knowledge of how to give intramuscular injections. The chip itself is implanted just under the skin of an animal with a syringe. It’s a no fuss, no muss procedure that takes less than a minute to do.

That is why many shelters when they find a stray animal on the street check them to see if they are chipped. If the animal is not already microchipped they will chip the animal for easier identification in the future.

Second, many kennels offer clinics periodically to encourage pet owners to have their pets’ microchipped. These clinics usually cost around $35 for the chip implant and registration with a pet watch service. No need to buy a package separately and then have the procedure done later by a vet which would be expensive.

Does It Work?

Before I answer that question I would like you to think about how you would go about trying to find your pet if it got lost. First, you will probably start scouring the neighborhood looking for your pet. You will probably spend about two or three hours doing this. In the meantime you pet is getting further and further away from you. Plus you have wasted valuable time looking for your pet. Your first step should always be to tell your local animal control or humane society about the missing pet. Unfortunately, most people make informing the authorities the last step.

So here’s the scenario. You lost your pet. The pet wasn’t microchipped. Animal control located a stray animal and took it to the shelter. Within a few hours the stray will be scanned for a chip. However, they do not find the chip. Now the animal is placed in isolation for evaluation before a veterinarian will check the stray.

Once the animal is evaluated and examined it will be placed up for adoption. And eventually it will be adopted by another family. That was your dog that you didn’t have microchipped.

Now suppose that you did have your pet microchipped. The above scenario will have a much different outcome because when a chip ID is found on a stray the owner of the animal will be contacted within twenty-four hours by the animal control. Now we have a happy outcome all because of a little chip a little bigger than a grain of rice. Fido gets to go home.

As you can see, a micro-chipped animal has an 80% chance of being returned to its proper owner. Those that don’t make it home have either met with a tragic end or have been taken in by a stranger who didn’t inform animal control or the local humane society.

Can Identify a Stolen Animal Too

Besides being a valuable tool in returning animals that get lost the micro-chip can also be a big help in identifying animal snatchers too. A problem that is on the increase around the world.

There are many reason why people snatch animals from others. Some of which you don’t want to think about as the result of such snatchings result in the death of the animal.

When a person is detained by the police for suspicion of animal kidnapping they will have the animal scanned for a chip. Finding a chip is proof positive that the animal does not belong to them. Pet owners who have their animals microchipped will immediately call the pet search number of their chip provider. This is a service that allows police to find the real owner of the animal which is evidence that can be used in a court of law.

The result is that the criminal gets charged and the animal is returned to its rightful owner. Again another happy ending for Fido.

In Summary

It is becoming more and more of a requirement by municipalities that an animal be tagged at your local animal control center. Usually when you licence your pet they will need a microchip number to be included in the registration information. If your animal is not microchipped they will often need you to have the animal chipped because of the local by-laws in your area of residence.

When you have your animal microchipped you help to protect the animal by making it easier for the authorities to find you and return your pet.

Also, the benefits of micro-chipping your animal far outweigh the disadvantages. Chipping practically guarantees the safe return of your pet. And there is nothing better than have your pet returned to you when they have been lost or stolen.

So if you haven’t done it yet, have your pet microchipped. It’s the best thing you can do for your pet. And did you know that many areas offer a service when you have your pet vaccinated against rabies. This service is the ability to also register your pet’s microchip number with them. This is a free service that is dedicated to bringing home lost animals.

My dog is microchipped and registered with three more services in addition to the microchip service provider. If my dog gets lost or stolen there will be a total of four agencies dedicated to locating and returning my dog to me.

As for my friends at the party they now agree that this is a worthwhile thing to do. Without providing facts but just the pros and cons of microchipping they began to see the light. This is a light that all pet owners need to see. It’s the responsible thing to do.

So is it time for you to reconsider the benefits of microchipping your pet?

Microchip & Rice Grain | Pet Quest
A microchip compared to a grain of rice

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