Dogs are the family members and not just an animal. If that family member of yours somehow gets lost, it is assumable that you will be beyond consolable. It is not rare for pets to get lost or wander off the local area and not be able to find their way back home. It is not like trained dogs can not get lost. Any pet can have a moment or a distraction that can separate you and your dog forever. Microchips are tiny chips planted below the skin of your dog with its address.
Microchipping a yes or a no?
Microchipping your dog is undoubtedly a yes. The situation described above is real and possible. Any chance to prevent that from happening should be grabbed at first sight. Microchips can help the founder of your dog track you down with the address stored in the chip. A microchip increases the chances of you being reunited with your dog if it gets lost. In some states microchipping your dog is compulsory. Ideally, it is done even before you adopt the dog. Even where it is not mandatory, pet owners are getting a microchip implanted in their pets to be on the safe side.
What is a microchip?
A microchip is a method of electronic identification. It is a permanent procedure. The microchip is small in size – about the size of a rice grain. It is implanted just below the skin of your pet, between the shoulder blades at the back. The technology used in the microchip is radio frequency identification technology. It is passive, meaning the device lacks a power source. It will remain inactive un till a scanner power it on. The microchip’s electronic circuit stores and encodes the unique data about your dog’s address and the owner’s details. Each chip is assigned a unique number that can be detected using a microchip scanner.
The data in the microchip; is transferred to a microchip database registry with the microchip number. This way, the registry has the details of the dog and the owner. Pet owners should be very particular about their contact details as recorded on the database against their pet’s microchip number. In case your pet wanders off or becomes lost- the vets, animal shelters, and local councils will try to scan your pet for a microchip and contact you via the details recorded in the database. It is of utmost importance to keep your details up to date so that even if you change your address or contact number, the founder will be able to contact you. A lot of times, owners forget to update their data on the database and cannot find their pets due to one silly mistake. If you are transferring your dog to a new owner, the new owner must add their contact details on the record.
Is microchipping painful?
In most cases, dogs don’t even realize that they have been microchipped. It is a quick, safe, and simple procedure and causes minute discomfort. The process only takes a few seconds. Filling up the paperwork takes more time than the process itself. Puppies might experience pain for a quick second. The intensity of pain is very light and fades away very quickly. Other dogs don’t even flinch throughout the procedure. Microchipping is a necessary procedure. It is the kind of thing whose importance is ignored until something terrible happens. To avoid regretting later, everyone should have their pets microchipped to have a chance of reuniting if someone gets lost. Studies show that microchipped dogs are 2.5 times more likely to return home without a mishap than non-microchipped dogs. The momentary discomfort is a small amount to pay for lifetime security and prevention of a terrible incident.
Who implants a microchip?
Microchipping, even though a simple procedure, but not anyone can perform it. It requires proper training and authenticity from the side of the implanter. Only authorized people can microchip pets. Commonly, vets and animal welfare shelter/organizations microchip dogs. Local NGOs and councils are also equipping themselves with the microchipping facility. There are seven registries where the microchip data is stored, five private and two government. In case you want to change your pet details, these registries are the ones you have to call. They will assist you in updating your contact details.
- Australasian Animal Registry
- Central Animal Records
- Global Micro
- NSW Government registry – the NSW Companion Animal Registry
- SA Government registry – Dogs and Cats Online
What are the health risks with microchips?
Generally, pet microchips are safe and secure. These are considered an easy and effective method for protecting dogs. Rarely, some instanced get reported where the pets develop soft tissue tumors like sarcoma and fibrosarcoma right where the chip was implanted. The chances of this happening are significantly low. Millions of dogs are microchipped worldwide every year, and the number of such cases is like one in a million.
Other ways of keeping your pet safe
Collar id tags- Collar ID tags can be seen on almost every dog around you. It is like an ID card for dogs. ID tags are simply added to the collar of the dog. The Tag is like a metal piece with engraved information about your dog and you. The owners like to engrave their pet’s name address and their phone numbers on the ID tag. The purpose of the ID tags is that in case your pet wanders off and someone finds it- the founder can look at the Tag and contact you.
GPS dog collars- another popular choice is a GPS dog collar. The collar comes with a GPS with location and activity tracking features. Owners who have to leave their pets at home all alone, as they go off to work, prefer this technology. The GPS tracker sends you the live location of your dog. You can easily access this via your smartphone, generally with the help of an app.
The GPS tracker and ID tags are not a substitute for the microchip. They should be used together to increase your dog’s safety. An owner generally jumps on any chance of securing their pet from mishappening. Most dogs have all three things on them.