Seven Common Microchip Myths Resolved

microchipA microchip can be the saving grace in returning your lost pet.  Permanent visible identification such as a collar with tags will return your pet home faster, however, these items can be lost.  Dr. Anna Coffin will identify some common microchip myths and solve them for you this week.

A microchip is about the size of a piece of rice and contains a single number which should be registered to your pet.  Unfortunately, a microchip is not visible, and your pet needs to be scanned with a special device to read the number.

Microchip myths solved:

  1. Microchips are not expensive.  The average cost for a microchip is $45.00 which is a one-time fee and often includes registration into a pet recovery database.  At Guthrie Pet Hospital we charge $35.00!
  2. It doesn’t require surgery to implant a microchip. In fact, microchips can be implanted under your pet’s skin during an office visit in the exam room.
  3. A microchip is not a GPS or tracking device. You can not track where your pet or locate your pet with a microchip.  The chip must be scanned, and then the person must contact the database to get your contact information
  4. Microchips must be registered with a database for your pet to be returned. In fact, if you move or your contact information changes you must update this information with the database or your pet will not be returned.  This is the most important aspect of getting a microchip.
  5. Microchips can stop working. Just like any other type of electronic device.  Microchips can fail.  Anna Coffin recommends scanning your pet during your pet’s annual examination to verify that it is still functioning and hasn’t migrated.
  6. A microchip does not contain your or your pet’s contact information. Currently, a microchip only contains a single number.  With advancements in technology, this may change in the future.
  7. A scanner is necessary to read your pet’s microchip. Unfortunately, there are several different types of microchips that work at different radio frequencies.  The scanner must be able to read that frequency to read the microchip.  Fortunately, there are universal scanners that can read all forms of microchips.

If your pet is lost and taken to a veterinary clinic or shelter, they will be scanned to see if they have a microchip.  Once the number is obtained, the staff must look up which company made the microchip so that the pet recovery database can be contacted.  The pet recovery database will then contact the owner directly.  Due to privacy laws, they will not release your private information to an individual but will release some information to the veterinary clinic or shelter.

To celebrate National Microchip Month, we are offering $10.00 off microchipping during the entire month of June!  Contact us today for this simple procedure.

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