In the chaos of moving from a house in the suburbs to a condo in the city, I realized that I had missed one very important step in the hundreds of updates, decisions, and changes that relocating can involve. I hadn’t updated the contact information registered to my dog’s microchip.
If you’ve adopted from a shelter, microchipping isn’t even a consideration in most instances. Pets are generally microchipped at a shelter so that step is normally already taken for you. However, if you haven’t microchipped your pet you might want to consider doing so. It is a great way to ensure identification of your pet in the event a collar breaks, your pet panics and runs away during fireworks, or if your pet is lost during a natural disaster.
Further, most shelters and veterinarian offices have a universal scanning tool to check a pet so that they can find information on the owner. Which means, like myself, you will need to remember to update the data when you change addresses or phone numbers.
According to the Blum Animal Hospital in Chicago, the microchip generally has a 25-year life span, so once your pet is microchipped it is normally good for their entire life. While microchipping is a personal decision, Blum points out that only 22 percent of non-chipped dogs make it back to their owners, and even fewer non-chipped cats find their way home.
While there are no guarantees, a microchip can be another tool in your kit to help keep your pet protected and more likely to be returned to you in the event they get lost. Reach out to your veterinarian for specific questions on microchipping options and whether it is the right choice for you and your pets.