Safety is our priority and we take every precaution to ensure pets are secure and happy. But out in the world, it’s hard to stay in control of every possibility. On trips to the store or vet, during moves, on vacation or during a natural disaster, the unthinkable can happen and pets can escape and become lost. A collar and tag is your first line of protection, but in case those are lost, microchipping is an excellent backup strategy.
According to the American Humane Association:
- Over 10 million pets get lost or stolen each year, and about 1/3 of all pets go missing for some period.
- For dogs who were chipped, the return-to-owner percentage was 52% vs 22% for un-chipped pets.
- For cats, the difference is even greater: 38% of chipped pets were reunited compared to 2% of un-chipped pets.
Just having a chip isn’t enough, it’s imperative to register your pet with the microchip company (each company has its own database) as well. Providing up to date contact information will ensure your pet is traced directly back to you. In addition, most microchip companies offer extra services such as custom printable “LOST PET” flyers and alerting vets and shelters in your area to be on the lookout for your pet.
Today, most microchips cost, on average, a one time fee of $45 and include free registry and lifetime coverage. The chips are no larger than a grain of rice and are administered like a vaccination, between the dog’s shoulder blades with no lingering discomfort. The chips are designed to last up to 25 years. Complications stemming from chips are extremely rare, the most common issue is movement from the original injection site. For roughly the price of a bag of dog food, your pet can have protection in an emergency and you can have peace of mind.
For more information about microchipping your pet, contact your vet.