Should You Microchip Your Pet?
It doesn’t take long before our pets become an irreplaceable part of our family. We’re usually irrevocably smitten from first wag or couch snuggle. We spend a lot of time and energy investing in our pet’s quality of life, but so many people miss one crucial step. At Deceased Pet Care, we wanted to talk in depth about something we’ve mentioned in short, a few times before: microchipping.
While there is still a lot of uncertainty in regards to microchipping, it is, in our opinion vital to the health and safety of your pet. We wanted to give you a little information, and breakdown some common myths surrounding the technology, so you can make an informed decision if microchipping is a good option for you and your pet.
What is microchipping?
Microchipping is the practice of injecting a small microchip encased in glass into your pet. It usually the size of a grain of rice and placed in the space between the shoulder blades.
Why should I microchip my pet?
Sadly, no matter what precautions you take, there is a chance you could lose your pet at some time during their lives. And while a good neighborhood search or some posters usually do the trick, a pet that is gone for more than just a few hours is less and less likely to find it’s way home.
Of the 7,700 lost pets last year, only 22% of those without microchips were returned to their owners. Those owners who had their pet’s microchipped saw an increase to over 53%! I don’t know about you, but I would much rather have a 1 in 2 chance than 1 in 5 of seeing my favorite companion again.
How does microchipping work?
Contrary to popular belief, a microchip is not a GPS tracking device. It is not used to pinpoint your pet’s exact location. Instead it is a record and information holder in case your pet is picked up and delivered to a local shelter or vet. You vet will scan for the chip and pull up your pet’s unique identification number in the pet database. This will then give your vet or shelter the most up to date contact information for you.
The microchip uses a radio frequency (RFID) to transmit information, and therefore require not battery or power source. It will in turn, last the lifetime of your pet without a need for replacement or maintenance.
Can’t I just use a tag then?
While both tags and microchips essentially provide the same information, a microchip is a permanent solution. There is no risk of your pet removing the collar or tag in a time of panic, the information being scratched off or faded, or simply removed by someone wanting to take your pet home. While microchips are not a replacement for tags and collars, they are a supplement which as discussed above greatly increases the chance of your pet being returned home safely.
What is ISO?
An ISO microchip is the microchip used by the International Standards Organization, and operated at a frequency of 134.2kHz. Using an ISO chip ensures no matter which city, state, or even country your pet is in, the vet or shelter in that area will have a scanner that can detect your pet’s chip and thus, your information.
How much does it cost?
Microchipping has become a relatively inexpensive procedure costing an average of $45 all inclusive. It is a non-invasive, non-surgical procedure that is no more painful than a standard vaccine and require no anesthesia.
Are there any frequent complications?
While one can never guarantee a complication free procedure, of the 4 million microchipping procedures done so far, only 391 cases had adverse reactions. There is no link between microchipping and long term health complications. At most, your pet may experience brief inflammation or irritation around the site, though even this is rare.
At Deceased Pet Care, we know you have a lot of questions, especially when it comes to your pet’s health, safety, and happiness. We think Microchipping is a necessary step in any pet care regimen, and that the benefits far outweigh and potential associated risks. We hope that you’ll join us in helping our beloved pets make it home safe to share in the joy and memories made for years to come.