What Are Pet Microchips and How Do They Work?
It sounds like something out of a science fiction movie, but pet microchips have been around for more than two decades. Statistics show that dogs and cats with chips are reunited with their owners 52% and 38% of the time, respectively. The likelihood of an animal going home that is not microchipped is much, much smaller. Because the Pet Experts believe in the power of pet microchips, we offer them for free at your pet’s first wellness exam.
Not a Replacement
Pet microchips are never a replacement for collars and tags. Rather, they act as a supplemental insurance against permanent separation.
Encased in biocompatible glass or polymer, pet microchips are about the size of a grain of rice and simply comprised of a capacitor, antenna, and connecting wire. They do not contain a battery and do not use GPS to show location.
When a low-power radiofrequency signal from a microchip scanner is emitted over a chip, electromagnetic induction generates power in the chip’s antenna which then transmits a personal identification number.
Powerful, but Not Deep
Pet microchips are implanted with a hypodermic needle into the subcutaneous tissue typically between the shoulder blades or the back of the neck. They are similar to the sensations experienced during routine vaccinations. However, some pets are microchipped while under anesthesia for other procedures, like spaying or neutering.
One Step Further
Animal recovery hinges on owner registration. You will receive information on the chip’s manufacturer. By filling out paperwork or online forms, you are maximizing the chip’s efficacy. If you do not register your contact information with your pet’s microchip ID number, the chip is rendered useless. We are happy to assist you with this extra step.
Also, once your information is linked to your pet’s chip in the national database, it must be updated if any changes are made to your phone number or address.
We Can Help!
Sometimes pet owners ask to have their pet’s chip scanned. The Pet Experts can look up the scanned number in the database to determine if your pet’s chip was registered in the first place, and if it’s been updated following any changes. Every little bit helps toward ensuring your pet’s swift homecoming if they are ever lost, missing, or stolen.
There are loads of ways that a pet gets away from home. Some wander off and get lost. Others are picked up by strangers. Even though well-loved pets don’t intend to be permanently separated, it’s a sad fate that waits for pets that aren’t microchipped.
If you have any questions or concerns about pet microchips, we encourage you to reach out to us.
We accept walk-ins during our Doctor’s Hours to meet your busy lifestyle. If you’d prefer to make an appointment, we offer those too!
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