Why You Should Microchip Your Dog

August 08, 2017

Why You Should Microchip Your Dog

You should microchip your dog because one out of three dogs will go missing at some point in their lives. You probably haven’t given it much thought unless you have been directly affected. What I have discovered since working at a veterinarian clinic is that unless you lose your dog or find a lost dog; you really won’t understand how frequently it happens.

Honestly, I never gave lost dogs much thought until witnessing, first hand, the number of dogs that are reported every week to the animal clinic. I will say that I was completely oblivious to this problem, and had no idea how many dogs run away, are abandoned, or found roaming around. I have since microchipped both of my dogs!

All pet parents want to do right by their beloved companions, and that is why you should microchip your dog. Another great decision you can make on behalf of your beloved pet is to pick all-natural dog treats when possible.

If You Find A Lost Dog

Moreover, if you have ever found a lost pet, then you understand the heartache of searching for owners to no avail and feeling helpless with the options of keeping the dog, placing the dog in a shelter, or finding them a temporary home. Bear in mind that shelters are usually full and may only be able to maintain the dog for a certain amount of time.

However, once you become aware of the amount of lost or abandoned dogs, it becomes a passion and a commitment to help pet owners understand why you should microchip your dog.  To report a lost or found dog, go to Home Again


What Is Microchipping?

A microchip is a radio transmitter that is about the size of a grain of rice encased in a small glass cylinder. This electronic device contains an individual ID number that registers your dog in a database.

A needle injects the microchip into the dog, typically done between the shoulder blades. Pet parents are often concerned about the chip migrating within the dog, and that is why we recommend the chip be placed by a veterinarian or someone that has extensive experience. Although there have been a few reported cases of infections, abscesses, and tumors, the benefits far outweigh the risks.

Most microchips last for around 25 years or longer, which will surpass the lifespan of most breeds. The average cost may vary depending on where you purchase the microchip. Some pet stores will offer exclusive discounts on microchipping while vet clinics may charge a higher fee. You can always call around to different places to see what the cost will be. Pets that are up for adoption, usually have a microchip before going home with you.

What Microchipping Is Not

You should microchip your dog to put the odds in your favor on the chance that they become lost. A dog that has a microchip is nearly 50% more likely to return to their home than their unchipped counterparts.

Moreover, it is important to remember that a microchip is not a tracking or GPS device that can pinpoint your dog’s location. A microchip only works if someone scans the chip. Shelters and veterinarian clinics have a universal scanner that scans the dog for a microchip. If the dog has a microchip, the scanner picks up the ID number that can then be used to search the database to find the owner. 

Also, keep in mind that if someone steals your dog, the thief is not going to take the dog to a shelter or vet clinic to scan for a microchip. Therefore, it is always a good idea to keep your dog’s identification tags up to date with current contact information. Check out what information to put on your dog’s ID Tag

How Will I Get My Pet Back If He Is Lost?

If the scanner picks up a chip’s ID number, then the information can be put into a database to find the owner. Remember, it is critical to register the chip and keep the contact details updated and current. Click here for a list of some of the companies that help lost pets find their way home.

The microchip is useless if it is not registered! Unfortunately, pet parents sometimes think that their dog is safe if they have a microchip, but please don’t forget to register the chip. Some clinics will take care of this step for you, so be sure to ask about the registering paperwork and the fees.

Moreover, if you are adopting, be sure to register the dog with your name and phone numbers. Also, if you move or change phone numbers, you will need to update that information. A microchip does not always guarantee the safe return of your dog, but you should microchip your dog for the best chance of a happy family reunion if your dog becomes separated from you for any reason.