Collars, Tags & Chips
Does your pet have a microchip?
A microchip is one of the surest ways to make sure your pet gets home if it slips away and ends up with a stranger or at a shelter. But, a microchip is only as good as the registered information. Each microchip has a unique ID that is read by a microchip scanner. That number is registered with the company that produced the microchip (such as HomeAgain, 24PetWatch, AVID, and others). The company has a database that matches your pet's microchip ID to your information.
If you've moved, changed phone numbers, or recently adopted your pet and aren't sure if the information is correct, you need to talk to the company that registered the microchip!
But does it work?
The Story of Oscar the Cat
Ms. P found this fellow under her house and coaxed him to her. He clearly belonged to someone. It was after hours, so the cat had to stay over at Ms. P's house. The next day they went to the City shelter to scan for a chip. They found out his name was Oscar and that he'd been missing 6 weeks. Because of his chip, Oscar went home that day.
What if your pet is found without a microchip, and it...
Has traveled outside your search area? Will the right connections get him/her home?
Is injured and needs an urgent procedure? Will the procedure be done?
Has crossed the Rainbow Bridge? Will you get to determine what happens with the remains?
Yes, but I've heard...
There are many myths about microchips: they are too expensive, harmful or GPS devices. These are not true. Look HERE to see the myths debunked. You might be surprised.
Why "Collars, Tags & Chips"?
While microchips are an important tool for all pet owners, when it comes to getting a lost pet home quickly and safely, owners should consider the microchip to be ID of last resort. The first line of attack is a sturdy collar with ID - a plate on the collar, permanent marker, a decorative tag, a license tag, a rabies tag, or ID with microchip information. Why?
It allows anyone who finds your pet to return it quickly, hopefully avoiding a shelter. Plus:
It is a visible sign that someone is looking for this pet, that it has a home.
The collar gives a good samaritan something to leash when bringing your pet to safety.
A rabies tag gives a good samaritan peace of mind that the pet may be safe to handle.
A tag from the chip company or other ID gives immediate information for a quick return that doesn't depend on going to a vet or a shelter to find a chip reader.
The moral of the story...
Many of us have a false sense of security trusting that a well-trained pet doesn't need ID, much less multiple IDs. Only with both collar/tag and chip can we begin to have real security. The key is to have readily accessible, durable CURRENT information available with:
Pet name or ID number
Owner name, veterinarian and/or microchip company