There are not many things more heartbreaking than posting a “Missing” flyer for a lost pet. So during the month of October we will be encouraging our clients to consider protecting their pet with an avenue for permanent identification—the microchip!

According to the American Humane Association, only about 17% of lost dogs and 2% of cats are ever recovered from shelters and returned to their original owners. Over 9.5 million pets are euthanized every year because their owners can’t be found. The costs involved in microchipping are minimal compared with the value of protection it offers your pet. In cases of natural disasters such as floods, hurricanes and tornadoes, the chances of your pet getting lost increase drastically. In the case of Hurricane Katrina, thousands of pets were lost and separated from their owners—and so many could have been found by their families if they had been microchipped.

Microchipping technology can virtually assure a pet owner that your beloved pet will be identified and returned to you.

The microchip is an identifying integrated circuit, about the size of a small lentil, implanted under the pet’s skin between the shoulder blades by injection. A microchip can’t be damaged or lost and will last for the lifetime of your pet, so it’s a great investment against the unthinkable (a lost pet).

These chips are scannable by any veterinarian or shelter and matched to owner information. The Ann Arbor Animal Hospital also keeps this information on record with your pet’s medical files. However, it is your responsibility as the pet owner to update your contact information.

The microchip is convenient, safe, and reliable. Though many veterinarians and animal shelters are actively working to inform their clients about microchipping, there are still a number of myths keeping pet owners from microchipping their pets.

The microchip is convenient, safe and reliable. If you have not had your pet microchipped, please discuss this important topic with your veterinarian at your next appointment. You’ll be glad you did!

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Ann Arbor Animal Hospital is a locally-owned animal hospital operating for over 90 years in Ann Arbor, MI.