All the Way Home: Microchipping in Dogs
With outdoor season officially underway, you may be spending more and more time on the go with your dog. If that’s the case, it’s important to think about the very best way to locate and identify your dog in case they ever get lost.
Many of us know our dogs are – shall we say – fireworks averse? This is the time of year when shelters fill up with lost dogs who have panicked due to noisy fireworks and have escaped their yards and homes. Let Conrad-Weiser Animal Hospital show you how microchipping in dogs can be one of the very best ways to ensure a happy reunion.
What is a Microchip?
Microchips are tiny devices that are implanted under your dog’s skin. About the size of a grain of rice, the microchip is injected between the shoulder blades in a procedure much like a vaccination. When a scanner is passed over the chip, it emits a radio signal and a unique ID number comes up on the scanner. The microchip company is contacted, and they let you know your dog’s location.
Once registered with your contact information, the microchip is ready to work its magic. If your dog is lost, a veterinary hospital, animal control officer, or shelter can scan for the chip. Most clinics now have universal scanners that detect any microchip frequency.
The Importance of Microchipping in Dogs
There are several scenarios that make microchipping in dogs a no-brainer. Here are our top reasons for microchipping your dog.
Microchips can never be lost. Unlike a collar and tags, which can slip or be pulled off, a microchip is safe and secure under your pet’s skin. Once placed, it should not move around, and it won’t cause your pet any discomfort.
Microchips work. The Humane Society of the United States estimates that only 2% of lost cats and 30% of missing dogs return home, if not microchipped. However, with a microchip, those numbers go up significantly; thanks to microchips, 39% of cats are reunited with their owners, and 52% of dogs are returned home.
Microchips provide peace of mind. Even indoor dogs and those with a collar and tags need a microchip. It only takes one unlatched gate or one moment of distraction for a pet to rush out the door or front gate. Tags and collars can be removed or fall off. Don’t take a risk, even with indoor pets.
Microchips save lives. Unfortunately, emergencies do happen. If a lost pet is brought to an emergency clinic with an injury, we can quickly and easily contact their owner if they have a microchip. This allows veterinary staff to work more efficiently to deliver medical care over and above basic life saving and pain management measures.
Do Microchips Hurt?
Microchipping in dogs is relatively pain free. The microchip is placed using a hypodermic needle in a procedure similar to receiving a vaccination. Of course, if your pet will be anesthetized for another procedure, such as a dental cleaning or spay/neuter surgery, we can place the microchip at that time, eliminating all discomfort.
The Nitty Gritty
Microchips are amazing little devices, but they’re only as good as the information attached to them. Be sure to do the following immediately after having a microchip placed:
- Register your dog’s chip with the microchip database.
- If you move or change phone numbers, update your information with the microchip company.
- Have us scan your pet once a year during their preventive care exam to make sure the information is still correct.
A lost pet is every owner’s nightmare, but with microchipping, there’s hope for a happy ending. Talk to us today about microchipping your dog!
Conrad Weiser Animal Hospital:
Where big city medicine and surgery meet small town customer service and value.