Losing your pet can be a terrifying experience. There’s nothing calming about looking for your pet as you grow increasingly more frantic, calling out their names into the unknown. As pet owners, we want our pets safe in our home so they don’t have to fend for themselves on the streets of LA. What a different world it is, to be out there without the comfort of their bed, their own food and water, and air conditioning! This is why it’s extremely important to help our pets find their way back home. Below, we’ll discuss the seriousness of microchipping your furry family member and other things you can do to prevent your pets from getting lost!
What is a microchip?
A microchip is a small computer chip that’s almost the size of a grain of rice! The chip acts as a way to identify the pet and whom it belongs to, by using an identification number. Because the chip is so small, it’s inserted underneath your dog or cats’ skin, (usually between the shoulder blades) using a needle and syringe. No anesthesia or surgery is required and it doesn’t hurt any more than a typical vaccine!
How does the microchip work?
The microchip is activated when a scanner moves across the pet’s body and the scanner’s radio waves trigger the chip to portray the identification number onto the scanner. About 50,000 scanners are located in vets and shelters all throughout the US. So, if your pet goes missing, the chances of you finding your microchipped pet are much greater, once they end up in vet offices or shelters. In order for a microchip to work, you must register the appropriate information needed such as your contact information and your pet’s info. To register, you can visit FreePetChipRegistry
“Home Again” service
This service is wonderful for giving pet owners a piece of mind. By enrolling your pet in “HomeAgain”, your pet will have better chances at being found. For example, once your dog goes missing, you can notify “HomeAgain” by a quick phone call. Once they are notified, they will send out Lost Pet Alerts (with a picture of your pet) to animal shelters and vet offices. Furthermore, they’ll even send out a volunteer rescuer who will actively look for your pet within a 25-mile radius of where they were lost. Once found, your pet’s microchip will be scanned and “HomeAlone” will be alerted and then notify you. So far, “HomeAlone” has rescued 2 million pets and finds 14,000 pets every single month! This service is not free and requires a membership. If you’d like to sign up or continue your research, click here.
Is microchipping my pet necessary?
If you want a better chance at reuniting with your pet when lost, then yes, microchipping is your safest bet! In a study conducted in 2009, 7,700 stray pets that were taken to animal shelters, showed that dogs without a microchip were only returned to their owners 21.9% of the time. Dogs with microchips however, were returned 52.2% of the time. That’s over a 50% success rate!
And what about cats? Well, cats are no exception to the benefits of a microchip. The study also showed that kitties without a microchip were only returned 1.8% of the time, whereas cats with a chip were returned 38.5% of the time. Truth is, there have been many studies about whether or not microchipping your pet is worth it and the same conclusion remains: pets with microchips are more likely to be returned to owners than pets who are not microchipped at all.
What are some other ways I can prevent my pet from getting lost?
- Fence your yard to secure your pet’s safety. Don’t let your pet out unsupervised –pets get lost and even stolen this way.
- Spaying and Neutering your pet is just as important as microchipping, as this will ensure your pet remains in the comfort of their own home, instead of embarking on a journey to find their soul mate.
- Train your dog using “come”, “stay”, or “leave it” commands.
- License your pets! Pet licenses and rabies tags include information that makes it easier for authorities to track you down in order to alert you they’ve found your pet.
- Don’t forget to put your phone number on your pet’s ID tags. This makes it more likely for strangers to contact you if they come across your distressed pup or feline. Also make sure your pet wears a collar with ID tags at all times! You never know when you and your beloved may get separated!
As a whopping 1 out of 3 pets get lost at some point during their life, we hope you understand the importance of microchipping your pet for a greater chance at being reunited with your beloved! Have you experienced the benefits of microchipping your pet? Are you a member of the “HomeAgain” service? Have any more tips on ensuring your pet doesn’t get lost? Comment below!