How Do Pet Microchips Work and What Are the Benefits for Pets?

Pets are an important part of many people’s lives. They can be like members of the family. But pets can escape the home, wander off, or get lost. It is agonizing to search for a lost pet. Owners can put a pet collar with a tag on a pet, but sometimes that collar can slip off. Without a collar, neighbors and pet shelters can have difficulty identifying the pet, but a pet microchip can solve that problem.


No bigger than a grain of rice, pet microchips help owners track lost pets. Microchips have become a routine part of pet care for many. But many pet owners still don’t understand how pet microchips work and why they should microchip their pet.


What Is a Pet Microchip?


A pet microchip is a simple transponder encased in a glass shell. It is as small as a rice grain. This chip is not battery-powered in any way. The tiny, encoded microchip contains just a small amount of information. Each chip contains an identification number, and when a shelter or a vet uses a special scanner, the radio waves read the identification number.

At one time, different manufacturers made microchips and scanners that were incompatible. Now most shelters and animal control have universal scanners. But having the microchip implanted in a pet isn’t enough — the owner must register the chip with the company to keep it activated. Some companies charge a one-time fee for this activation, while others charge an annual fee.


Another Line of Defense


Even the most careful pet parents can lose a pet. Pets are often inquisitive and like to explore. It can be hard to resist an open door to the outside. Other pets may spend some or all their time outdoors near their owners’ homes. Either way, a pet collar is smart to identify the pet and the home it belongs to.


Pet collars can slip off, and the dangling tags with the owner’s information can fall off. A pet microchip acts as a second line of defense in this case. If a good Samaritan or animal control agency takes a pet to a shelter, someone at the shelter will use a scanner in the hopes of detecting a registered microchip. That can lead the pet back home in no time, averting potential tragedy.

Although implanting such a tiny microchip seems simple, pet owners should take their pets to the vet for the injection. The vet can implant the microchip properly so that the scanner will sense it.


Keep the Information Updated


Some pet owners adopt a pet that already has a microchip. They can update the information by finding a vet or a shelter that can scan the chip to figure out what kind it is. By contacting the microchip company, the owner can update their adopted pet’s information.


Some pet owners opt to implant a new pet microchip rather than update the old one. They will not interfere with each other.


Bringing Them Home


The likelihood of reuniting with a lost pet increases dramatically when owners microchip their pet. Because of this, shelters are much less likely to euthanize them. Your veterinarian’s office can perform a safe and quick microchip injection.

For more information on pet microchipping, please visit Dr. Mike’s Affordable Vet Care in Arlington, Texas. You can also call (817) 663-8160 to book your appointment for a pet microchip today.

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