To Microchip or not to Microchip – That is the Question – Sacha’s Diary
The other day I saw a stray dog wandering around the neighborhood and I got to worrying about him. The poor thing! How did that happen? Is he lost? Do his parents know he’s missing? Was he abandoned (sure hope not!). He was moving too fast so unfortunately we couldn’t catch up to him, but we found out later he got returned to his home. Yay!
Though that story had a happy ending I got to wondering how I would feel if I somehow got separated from my family. My Daddy just wrote a blog a couple of weeks ago about a missing Samoyed named Mya who had her owners worried to death about her! But, Mya was found! Another happy ending! Woo-hoo! Still…reading about Mya and seeing this stray dog in the neighborhood got me a little worried.
But one thing that gives both my parents and me peace of mind is the fact that I have a microchip implanted in me.
How Microchips Work
If you don’t know what that is, or how to microchip a dog, allow me to explain. A pet microchip is a fancy high technology thing to help locate me if I were to get separated from my family. It’s sort of like a mini transponder that my parents asked my veterinarian to implant in me.
My veterinarian, Dr. Glater at McKillip Animal Hospital, injected a microchip in me when I was still just a puppy. The microchip is very small, some say about the size of a grain of rice. Dr. Glater used a needle to put it in kind of around my shoulder blades and it took all of about 10 seconds. It was just like getting a vaccination or something like that. And it didn’t hurt me at all! Quick, painless, and no anesthesia required!
I’m not sure how much it costs, my parents handle the money end of the family. But I think they said it was pretty cheap. Maybe like $50 or $75? I’m sure it varies based on where you and where your parents and you live, so just ask you veterinarian. These days most veterinarians use microchips as do many animal shelters. Give them a call and I’m sure they can give you all the details.
Each microchip contains a unique identification number with the registry of the chip maker. Think of it like a tech paw print (errr…I mean finger print!). Each one is unique to the pet that has one. So no other pet in the world has the same chip identification number as I do. Pretty cool right?! And these things last a very long time, like about 25 years. That’s the equivalent of 175 dog years! Wow!
BUT, you have to register the chip with the chip company that makes the one that gets implanted in you. It’s easy though. They’ll have paperwork that you fill out and return. Sometimes you can even do it online. Just make sure to ask your vet or the animal shelter about it when they do the implantation.
So now, if I get lost and somebody like another veterinarian, animal shelter, or animal control officer finds me and scans me, they’ll be able to call the chip registry people. And those guys will have my parents name and phone number. They’ll give call them and voila! We’d be reunited! That’s all there is to it. Woo-hoo!
Now one note of caution, if your pet parents decide to move you, make sure they know to call the chip registry and update the information. Otherwise, they might call an old phone number or something. Don’t let that happen!
Oh, and there’s another fun thing about microchips. Lots of companies are now making really cool gadgets and products that work specifically with your pet’s microchip. You can read about a Microchip Pet Feeder on our page of cool dog appliances and gadgets. Pretty nifty I’d say!
Microchips Do Not Replace a Harness, Collar and Tags
Microchips are a great backup system to have, but they should never be the primary system you use. Trust me people, you gotta keep it Old School here too. It takes a special scanner to read the chip, which is great if you get found by an animal shelter or by an animal control officer.
But how many animal control officers do you find just strolling down the street? Not many right. I’d be much more likely to be found but another person in the neighborhood, and they’re not going to have a scanner. But, if I’ve got my collar and dog tags on, they’ll be able to get me back home that way. My parents actually use a harness for me, because like a lot of Samoyeds, I have a tendency to pull. But they one they have for me works pretty well.
And, if the harness/collar and tags fall off, or if some evil person removes them, the microchip is a great backup to have. I don’t like to think there would be bad people in the world who would try to steal a Samoyed like me or any other kind of a pet. Or to do us some kind of harm. But, sadly, I know they’re out there so we must be very careful. Having a microchip in place can help reunite your lost pet with the family if the bad guys get caught by the good guys.
So let’s it hear for the good guys!! Woo-hoo!!
Summing it Up
Getting your pet implanted with a microchip is a very good idea for all of the reasons I mentioned. It’s quick, easy, painless, and inexpensive. There’s no reason not to do it. And believe me, if the unthinkable happens and I ever got separated from mommy and daddy somehow, I’ll be sure glad that I have a microchip implanted inside of me. Amiright humans?!
Oh, and if you are reunited with your lost dog, I’d say he or she deserves a treat don’t you think? I’d recommend you make some of my Grandma’s Homemade Dog biscuits. So yummy!
What do you guys think? Do you have any questions or concerns about getting your dog or pet implanted with a microchip? Have you had an experience where you were reunited with a lost fur baby because they had a microchip?! Please leave me a comment and I’ll be sure to get back to you.
Until next time, Mr. Diary!
P.S. Remember, all posts signed off as “-S” are written by Sacha himself.