Millions of pets are lost or stolen every year. Only 22 percent of lost dogs and less than two percent of lost cats who enter animal shelters are ever returned to their owners. Those numbers increase to 52 percent for dogs and 38 percent for cats if they are implanted with a microchip.
A microchip is a small electronic device. The microchip is about the size of a grain of rice. The chip is injected into the loose skin between a pet’s shoulder blades. The procedure is performed by your veterinarian without an anesthetic and takes only a few seconds. The chip is encoded with a unique identification number that can be read by a special scanner. If your lost pet is found and brought to a veterinarian or animal shelter, they will scan your pet to see if a microchip is present. They can enter the number into a database to recover your contact information. Implanting the microchip is a one-time procedure, but it is important to keep the contact information current or your lost pet may remain lost.
Other forms of identification include tattoos. Tattoos are more common with breeding animals. Keeping a collar with a nametag on your pet is an equally important way to identify them. If they get lost in your neighborhood, a tag with your phone number will get them home faster. I suggest putting your cellphone number of the tag in case your pet gets lost while traveling.
Proper identification will get your lost pet home quicker.