In the United States, around 10 million dogs and cats are lost or petnapped yearly according to the American Humane Association. Unfortunately, only 23% are reunited with their owners, the Coalition for Reuniting Pets and Families found. That's why vets recommend microchipping your pet to avoid this heartbreaking scenario.
But is it practical and, more importantly, safe to get your pet chipped? Let's discuss it in this article.
What is pet microchipping, and what is it not?
Pet microchipping is the process of injecting a glass-enclosed electronic chip beneath the skin of a dog or cat. It doesn't need any anesthesia or surgery to implant it. The vet only uses a relatively large hypodermic needle, plus a little coaxing to convince the pet to get a jab.
The microchip, which is like a grain of rice, functions as a transponder. It is activated when a scanner swept over the pet releases radio waves. The chip then sends the identification number to the scanner, where it will be displayed on its screen.
All the valuable information about the pet is retrieved through the identification number, such as the owner's name, contact number, and address. It also includes the pet's species, breed, photo, gender, birth date, weight, coat color, and its veterinarian's name. It can also identify if the dog or cat is spayed or neutered, along with its rabies tag number.
What is a microchip not? Although it is also called a transponder, the tiny electronic chip isn't a GPS locator. This is one of the misconceptions that most pet parent communities believe about pet microchipping. If that's the case, thousands of dogs or cats will never end up in rescue centers and animal shelters where they might be subjected to euthanization because of overcrowding.
Pet microchipping: the good, the bad, and the ugly
Microchipping your pet is one of the ways to prevent them from being forever lost or stolen. What are the benefits and disadvantages of microchipping your pet?
- It is more secure than collars and tags. Even your dog can easily remove the collar, especially if it isn't correctly worn around the neck.
- It has a long service life of up to 25 years and doesn't require any batteries. However, you have to ensure that your contact information is always up-to-date in the database.
- It is safe to microchip an eight-week-old pet. This way, you will never part with your pup or kitty during the age where they love to wander.
- If your pet ends up in an animal shelter or rescue center, the first thing they will do is microchip scanning. This increases the possibility of a lost pet being reunited with its owner.
- Since the microchip is implanted in the soft tissue of your pet, it might "travel" in your pet's body. Thus, it makes scanning a difficult task to carry out.
- The dog or cat may experience pain when injected with the chip. Therefore, your pet must be anesthetized.
- Microchip identification systems aren't centralized worldwide. For example, even though your dog has an internationally recognized ISO standard microchip, not all vets have universal scanners or forward-reading scanners.
- Pet microchipping is expensive. It involves two types of fees. One is the vet's fee, and the other is the microchip company's registration fee. The latter may be a one-time payment. However, there are other microchipping companies that oblige their customers to pay a yearly subscription.
Perfect Petzzz: A pet you won’t lose and need chipped
Sounds too good to be true? Yet that is the beautiful truth about Perfect Petzzz. You don't have to pet-proof your home when this is your family pet.
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Besides, Perfect Petzzz will never wander away from you because all it does is sleep on its soft bed 24/7. Despite this, it can provide the same companionship and comfort level as real pets.
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